Food-X Technologies, a SaaS startup in the grocery space, has received $250,000 from the Digital Technology Supercluster to lead a new collaboration aimed to develop an e-grocery management system for the provincial government and health authorities in British Columbia.
The e-grocery project is part of the Digital Technology Supercluster’s COVID-19 program.
The initiative is aimed to deliver groceries to essential workers, non-pandemic patients, and citizens in quarantine due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Other companies that are collaborating on the project include Spud, Adaptech, 1QBit, ETG, and Microsoft. Food-X Technologies and the participating industry members are investing a collective $248,000 into the project.
“In this unprecedented challenge to our communities, we are pleased to be collaborating with the Digital Technology Supercluster and some of the world’s leading companies to provide a food management system to support our front line essential workers, patients and citizens,” said Food-X Technologies founder and CEO Peter van Stolk.
The management software will use artificial intelligence to manage food quality and freshness and optimize packing and deliveries to ensure food is delivered to the province’s frontline workers and patients. FoodX is also hiring displaced and recently unemployed workers as part of the packing and delivery process.
Burnaby, BC-based Food-X Technologies offers a software that helps grocery retailers operate fulfillment centres and track food freshness. The company has a focus on sustainability, offering reusable bags and helping vendors minimize food waste by providing them greater visibility across their inventories.
The Digital Technology Supercluster, located in BC, has the broadest mandate of the five clusters chosen for the Government of Canada’s Innovation Supercluster Initiative. The supercluster is led by companies like Microsoft, Telus, Terramera, D-Wave, as well as the provincial government and BC’s post-secondary institutions.
The supercluster has created a new COVID-19 Program focused on investing in solutions that protect the Canadian economy as well as public health. It has committed $60 million from its $153 million budget to invest in solutions that address issues created by the crisis. The program has received more than 300 submissions from companies.
In a Tuesday press briefing, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau highlighted the Digital Technology Superclusters new projects, including Food-X’s e-grocery initiative.
“Canadian innovators are among the best in the world, and it’s great to see so many of them use their talents to help our communities,” the prime minister said.
“Our supercluster is honoured to be collaborating on such a critical project with Food-X and its partners,” said Sue Paish, CEO of the Digital Technology Supercluster. “Using technology to ensure the health of our frontline essential workers is just one example of how our community collaborates to address some of the greatest challenges this pandemic presents.”
Last month, the supercluster launched a project in collaboration with Traction on Demand to create an online platform that will coordinate supplies for health workers fighting COVID-19. The supercluster is also supporting the development of a platform that uses data to better predict emergencies and consolidate necessary resources.
Image source Unsplash. Photo by Aditya Chinchure.