Scaling FoodCloud for global growth
what was delivered
Threadable was chosen by FoodCloud to design build and implement a best-in-class digital platform to connect businesses that have surplus food, to charities and community groups that need it.
A core requirement was a platform that would allow the organisation to grow and scale, and would have the ability to process many tens of thousands of meals on a daily basis, across multiple donors, donation recipients, donation types, regions, countries and languages.
Key elements of the solution delivered:
• Web and mobile (Android, iOS) B2C and B2B apps
• Middleware for integration with multiple supermarkets and other donors, including Tesco and Aldi
• Backend platform for food producers, retailers and charities
• Support for multiple geographical regions and languages
• APIs for donors, foodbanks and charities to integrate their systems with the FoodCloud platform
Sector: Social Enterprise
When: Released Spring 2021
Services: Platform & App Development / CTO-As-A-Service
Globally, 33% of food is wasted, causing four times more carbon emissions than global aviation. At the same time, an estimated 821 million people do not have enough to eat. From humble beginnings in 2012, FoodCloud now works with all the major supermarket chains in the UK & Ireland with accompanying operations in Canada, Central Europe and Australia.
33% of food is wasted globally
821m people do not have enough to eat
The challenge for FoodCloud
A platform that could scale
FoodCloud had attracted global recognition for their work – however the technology platform that powered FoodCloud was unable to scale and meet the growing needs of the organisation and its stakeholders. Platform limitations included those associated with varying food types & standards, the integration requirements of large supermarket chains and the needs of charity workers in remote locations.
The digital transformation of FoodCloud
Threadable led the digital transformation of FoodCloud from a locally focused business to an international enterprise. Through business process consulting, architectural services and software engineering the following were delivered.
- Agile and efficient product management and engineering processes that aligned with security and GDPR requirements of all stakeholders, including retailers and charities.
- Automated and continuous Integration, testing and release management procedures.
- Secure web and native mobile apps (Web, Android, iOS) and Back End Platform components to support the entire lifecycle of food donations.
- The regeneration of historical donation data based upon audit logs, to enable enterprise stakeholders such as Tesco, Sainsburys and Morrisons to analyse their donation activity and sustainability performance back to 2012, when they first engaged with FoodCloud. This data is crucial to allow donors to understand their progress towards their UN Sustainable Development goals.
- A suite of well documented RESTful APIs to allow retailers to integrate with the FoodCloud solution directly from their in-store scanning devices.
- Migrated of all donor, charity and foodbank data from the old system to the new platform.
- Design and implementation of autoscaling Azure infrastructure to meet the twice daily peaks in demand that requires processing of 10,000 donations within a 15 minute window.
Understanding the goals of Foodcloud and their corporate partners was key to designing a solution that would not only meet today's needs, but tomorrow's vision...
Engagement between FoodCloud and Threadable
An integrated team approach was adopted between the two organizations, combining product, design and technical capabilities, in order to deliver at pace.
The engagement was kicked off with a series of discovery workshops, including cross-party groups of international stakeholders such as supermarket chains, food producers, manufactures and charity groups.
Following the discovery workshops, a three month iterative process to capture and document the business strategy, revenue model and operating model for the business took place. This formed the input to the definition of an overall technology strategy that clearly set out the short, medium and longer term business and complimentary technology roadmaps. The next phase focused on the optimum technology platform architecture, and once this was agreed, the engineering and platform build began. A fully integrated agile delivery approach was adopted, and following go-live of the new platform, Threadable has maintained a support and run service level agreement, completing the full lifecycle.
Threadable were an invaluable part of our team as we accelerated our product development in ways which we could not have achieved on our own. Threadable also provided support across different aspects of the project from product workshops to tech recruitment to system architecture. We will continue to work with Threadable on projects as they have proven their ability to deliver and are a great team to work with.
12,000 Daily users
12 Donations processed per second
10,000 Donations per day