Categories
Sweets Technology

Krispy Kreme UK Teases New Xbox Donut

Krispy Kreme UK’s Twitter account recently fired off a tweet that contained a promo video teasing an Xbox-themed donut dubbed ‘The Nexus Level Doughnut’.

While details on taste and specific ingredients are scarce for now, Krispy Kreme UK’s site does state availability from August 2 – August 22. On the site are rules to a sweepstakes that can get fans a free month of Xbox Game Pass Ultimate and the chance to win themselves an Xbox Series S.

We’ll be sure to put you on to more details surrounding this product release once they become available.

Categories
Packaged Food Technology

Introducing The First Ever REESE’S PUFFS Musical Cereal Box

Giving a whole new meaning to “playing” with your food, REESE’S PUFFS is turning its cereal boxes into special edition, first-ever series of music boxes. Dubbed the RP-FX and RP-PRO, these boxes can actually create real music, and REESE’S is encouraging fans to share their beats and creations to an accompanying app.

Here’s the details on each REESE’S PUFFS music box:

RP-FX
– Comes in three limited-edition boxes: Crunchy Drum Machine, Creamy Lead Synth, and Chocolatey Bass Syth.
– The music comes to life when fans add the REESE’S PUFFS on the back of the box and use an accompanying app on PuffsFX.com to create their beats.
– RP-FX boxes use a first-of-its-kind augmented reality technology to detect where the PUFFS have been placed and make unique music tracks based off their placement.
– Fans can get all three boxes to create different layers to the tracks.
– RP-FX boxes are available now at grocery stores nationwide.

RP-PRO
– The RP-PRO is an ultra-exclusive synthesizer, designed to look like a box of REESE’S PUFFS cereal but with all the music samples, audio effects, functions and power you’d expect from the most serious piece of music equipment. 
– It features custom REESE’S cup dials, custom-molded REESE’S PUFFS buttons along the bottom, chocolatey drum pads, a built-in sampler and a dome visualizer with menu. Plus a secret inside compartment to fit a small bag of REESE’S PUFFS cereal.
– REESE’S PUFFS will be sending the RP-PRO to some of the top music artists and hit-makers around the country, as well as giving away a few to a couple lucky fans.

Categories
Entrepreneurship Restaurants Technology

New Food App Allows Diners to Make Decisions By Exploring Visual Menus At Local Restaurants

We’ve all been there. You don’t know what you want to eat and you’re looking for a recommendation. The next time that happens, turn to LooksYummy.

Created by African-American tech developers Kenrick Brown and Solomon Morgan, this meal-sharing app allows users to eat with their eyes. It aims to assist restaurant owners in jumpstarting their sales while recovering from the pandemic by allowing food seekers, travelers, and tourists to make decisions by exploring visual menus at nearby restaurants while discovering unique culinary dishes made by local eateries across the world. 

With millions of food photos shared every day through multiple social platforms, LooksYummy streamlines the food sharing experience. Research shows that consumers are 45% more likely to purchase a menu item with a photo of the actual dish over menu listings without photos. 

“We have created a community that can help cultivate great dining experiences,” said Kenrick Brown, Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer of LooksYummy. “LooksYummy is a niche application to display food from various restaurants. From a user standpoint, food is an art. People eat with their eyes, then taste. From a business standpoint, LooksYummy allows restaurants to provide visual images of meals on their menu at their restaurant, and now users can see before they order and get good visuals of what the actual meal is.”

Via the app, restaurants can advertise their top menu choices and display visual menus while users can add compelling content, decide where to dine, and discover dishes they will love. The app also allows users to post new meals, tag a dish to a restaurant, browse meal offerings, and follow their favorite food blogger’s food journey.

The app also offers community users many perks like earning points at nearby restaurants, discounts, and more through weekly and monthly contests and promotions. 

“We are joining restaurants and customers together on one platform,” said Solomon Morgan, Co-Founder and Co-Chief Executive Officer of LooksYummy. “Most of the time, the foods I order are the ones that have a picture. As an Army Veteran, LooksYummy would have been helpful because I was always dining out while serving.”

LooksYummy is now available for free download for iPhone and Android users.

Categories
Sweets Technology TikTok

A Cake ATM Exists At The Harrah’s Casino In Las Vegas

@serious_izzy

A cake ATM in Vegas! ##fyp ##foryou ##fittok ##lasvegas ##vegas

♬ Mr. Blue Sky – Electric Light Orchestra

Convenience is golden and is the gravity that draws folks to pretty much any product and service. If there’s something out there to make our lives a little easier, then we are all for it. One such thing that really ups the ante on convenience and instant gratification is this Cake ATM spotted by @izzy_serious at the Harrah’s Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada.

From the looks of this TikTok clip above, this cake vending machine / ATM hybrid dispenses six kinds of cake: chocolate, red velvet, rainbow, americana, carrot, and chocolate rainbow. All slices are listed at $8.95 a pop, which is a fair price for a sweet service that comes in clutch.

Categories
Deals Entrepreneurship Food Waste Restaurants Sustainability Technology

Groundbreaking App Lets You Rescue $15+ Worth Of Food For Just 6 Bucks

Photo: Les Kaner // Too Good To Go

Food waste has persisted as a global problem that many companies are trying to find solutions for. Upcycled foods and waste reduction are two industries that have formed to combat excess food waste, but 1.4 billion tons still gets tossed every year, the majority of which is at home or at restaurants.

On the restaurant end, there’s a large network of connected local restaurants called Too Good To Go that’s striving to make a massive impact on rescuing food that would otherwise go to waste.

Photo courtesy of Too Good To Go

Consumers can tap into this network via the Too Good To Go app, which allows them to reserve “Surprise Bags” from spots around them that are in the system for $5-$6. What you get in return is approximately $15 worth of food that the restaurant would have otherwise thrown out.

Overall, the restaurant wins by making a little extra money off of food they would’ve lost, you get to score on a massive discount for some food, and Too Good To Go profits slightly off of the cost of the bag. Pretty much, everybody benefits, including the planet, as food waste is cut and helps lower waste and resulting greenhouse gas emissions.

It’s not just restaurants that you can get food from, however, as Too Good To Go partners with restaurants, bakeries, supermarkets, and hotels. Currently, they’re linked with 75,000 different spots worldwide.

Photo courtesy of Too Good To Go

Too Good To Go, founded in 2016, is currently in the midst of a massive push to expand globally. They’ve recently made a debut in San Francisco, and can also be seen in New York City, Chicago, Austin, and other metropolises worldwide.

It’s one of the biggest ways to fight against food waste, and it pretty much works the same for a customer as a food delivery app would. Sure, there’s a lot more we can do at home to combat food waste too, but this is a pretty convenient way to get started.

Categories
Beer Technology

Here’s How You Can Win This Adorable Heineken Beer Transporting Bot

Nobody likes lugging around a heavy cooler under the summer sun. It feels like freshman duties, a task delegated to younger siblings. But the brilliant folks at Heineken put their thoughtful caps on and created a charming little robot to carry the cooler full of cold ones around for us.

Meet the Heineken B.O.T. (Beer Outdoor Transporter). Not only does it have a clever little acronym for a name, it also exists to serve you loyally by hauling 12 cans of Heineken wherever you go. Pixar couldn’t have written this up any better.

If you’re looking to get the Heineken B.O.T. to do your bidding, visit HeinekenBOT.com for a chance to win starting today.

Categories
Food Waste Plant-Based Sustainability Technology

Introducing The World’s First 3D-Printed Compostable Coffee Pods

Within the US, over half of the population drinks coffee. That’s 150 million people getting their caffeine fix, and typically at a three cup per day average. Additionally, single-use coffee pods have become a popular choice for caf-fiends with 41% of Americans owning a single-cup coffee maker.

Great for productivity, but not so awesome for our environment, over 50 billion paper cups are thrown away within the U.S. each year. It’s even said that discarded coffee pods, which are made of aluminum and plastic, could circle the entire globe a staggering 10 times. Despite this level of massive waste, coffee popularity shows no signs of slowing down.  

To help combat coffee consumption waste, forward-thinking company NEXE Innovations has created the world’s first compostable single-use coffee pods. Founded in 2015, NEXE Innovations uses 3D-printing to design, prototype and patent the pods, offering a sustainable option for eco-conscious coffee lovers. The idea came through a desire to replace non-biodegradable plastic. Spending six years in development, the company is now a leader in plant-based manufacturing. Their first commercial product is aptly-named the NEXEpod.

“Through continued trial and error, we have developed a pod that can consistently withstand the heat and pressure of a Keurig coffee brewing system while also being plant-based, fully compostable and still provides the freshness and great taste that our consumers expect from a good cup of coffee. To be able to provide these qualities and do so in batches of thousands of pods at a time has been a very difficult process and a definite engineering feat,” says Ash Guglani, President of NEXE Innovations.

The company currently uses 3D-printing technology to quickly design the NEXEpods, moving from design to concept in under a day. They now have most of the necessary equipment to produce over 230 million of the bamboo and corn based pods per year.

Introduced earlier this year, XOMA Superfoods is the company’s in-house coffee and superfoods brand. Created as a vehicle to deliver high quality coffee and superfoods to market, XOMA also helps to ensure NEXE adheres to their sustainability goals. The first product offered was a soluble micro-ground coffee blend fortified in MCT-oil and packaged in the NEXEpod. Since then, they’ve expanded to offer additional options like their Keto and Mushroom coffees, each of which can be ordered online

Moving forward, NEXE Innovations plans to continue expanding their proprietary coffee and superfoods lines into conscious coffee consumers. Only available on their website and Amazon currently, the company hopes to achieve Amazon Prime status soon. They’re also in talks with various other online platforms that cater to plant-based and coffee enthusiasts.

Categories
Adventures Science Technology

Scientists Turn Plastic Waste Into Vanilla Flavoring

Plastic plays a considerable role in our everyday lives. From the beverages we drink, to our packaged foods, plastic is used in every way imaginable. The upside is simple, it makes life easier. The downside is that its pervasiveness also has a tendency to impact our environment negatively.

Plastic waste pollutes from pavements to the Pacific. Humankind is often impulsive with innovation. In other words, things are created faster than ways to manage them. A fun fact is that there’s been more plastic manufactured within the first 10 years of this century than the whole of our previous one. Now we produce and throw away over 380 million tons of plastic each year.

That sounds bleak. But it’s not all plastic doom and gloom. There have been and will continue to be countless approaches to reducing plastic waste. Popular approaches include community clean ups, recycling of used-products, reusing products and “upcycling”. These are simple methods everyone can make a part of their daily habits. Yet while those methods tend to imply a necessary mindset shift, science has found another approach altogether. 

Scientists from the University of Edinburgh have discovered a way to upcycle plastic waste into vanilla flavoring. This is not a joke. Vanillin is a popular chemical used in the food industry and is often referred to as “imitation vanilla”. In 2018, global demand for the chemical exceeded 37,000 tons. That’s more than the demand for natural vanilla beans. One huge red flag is that 85% of vanillin is synthesized from fossil fuel chemicals. So clearly it isn’t the most eco-friendly of flavors. 

The research was published in the scientific journal Green Chemistry and uses engineered E. coli bacteria to convert TA (terephthalic acid) to vanillin.  Terephthalic acid and vanillin’s chemical compositions are very comparable and the engineered bacteria only needs to make a few changes to the hydrogens and oxygens that are bonded to the same carbon foundation.

Creating the same conditions for brewing beer, scientists heated a microbial broth to 98.6 fahrenheit for 24 hours. This effectively converted 79% of the TA to vanillin. According to Joanna Sadler, of University of Edinburgh, “This is the first use of a biological system to upcycle plastic waste into a valuable industry chemical and it has very exciting implications for the circular economy.”

It will be exciting to watch how this develops. Who knows, in the future maybe ice cream, yogurt, pastries and many more will be produced from plastic waste. The next steps for the University of Edinburgh research group is to continue modifying the bacteria to improve conversion. My hope is that efforts such as these will inspire more intelligent approaches to global issues.