7 Must Have Sustainable Food Apps

By Analiese Paik

We work hard at the Fairfield Green Food Guide to provide Fairfield County consumers with guides to help you eat more sustainably. Each season we update our CSA, organic farm stand, and farmers’ market guides, plus publish specialty guides to buying grass-fed beef, local and Heritage turkeys, a sustainable cup of coffee, and greening your Halloween or Easter. But when you’re on the road for business or vacation looking for somewhere sustainable to eat, or in the supermarket trying to choose Non-GMO products or sustainable seafood, nothing is handier than a mobile food app. Concerned about food waste? There’s an app for that too!

These food apps deserve to be on your mobile devices because they take the work out of eating locally and sustainably. All are free and available for download through iTunes.

#1 Seafood Watch by the Monterey Bay Aquarium is the definitive app for consumers looking to purchase sustainable seafood at the grocery store, fish monger and restaurant. The crowd sourcing feature allows you to upload your sustainable seafood experience to the app for the benefit of other users.

#2 ShopNoGMO by the Non-GMO Shopping Guide is a handy shopping guide that organizes foods the same way they’re grouped in your grocery store. Since looking up each and every item is tedious, learn how to avoid most GMOs with our Handholding Consumer Guide to GMOs, then use the app when you’re in doubt about a particular brand.

#3 True Food by the The Center for FoodSafety/True Food Network is another popular non-GMO shopper’s guide app that will help you find Non-GMO brands and inform you about GMOs in every category of food. The app review below is by Living Well Maxwell.

#4 Eat Local by the National Resource Defense Council (NRDC) will help you learn what’s in season anywhere in the US and available at local farmers’ markets.  Complete with directions by car, bike, foot, or public transportation, their aim is to get your there and get fresh food on your table!

#5 GoPure by Puur Buy Inc.  If you’re visiting San Francisco or Berkley, CA, the cities where this app is “rooted”, use the app to find restaurants that serve Locavore, Vegetarian/Vegan, Gluten-Free and Organic Meat meals. The app is being built out across the country with the help of users who upload their sustainable restaurant meal information. Eateries may also register directly with the app and are required to share details about responsibly sourcing ingredients and otherwise reducing their environmental impact.

#6 Clean Plates  by Clean Plates.com. When in Manhattan, Brooklyn, Austin, TX and Los Angeles, CA, this is the perfect tool for quickly finding restaurants serving healthy, sustainable and delicious food. Look for the blue circle which signifies “clean”, their highest quality and sustainability rating. For your friends and family without mobile phones, steer them to Clean Plates’ printed guides for Manhattan or Los Angeles.

It is the mission of Clean Plates “to make it easier and more enjoyable for you to eat healthy, sustainable food without sacrificing an ounce of taste. Whether you’re a conscientious carnivore or vegetarian, or you’re going gluten-free — we’ve got restaurant reviews, news and tips to help boost your health and keep your taste buds happy.”

#7 Go Rescue by Community Plates Community Plates’ Go Rescue mobile app was awarded the Computerworld 2013 Honors Program 21st Century Achievement Award in the category of Human Services last week. This Norwalk-based nonprofit company rescues surplus food from farms, grocery stores, and restaurants, then with the help of a strong and growing volunteer network, directly redistributes it to local receiving agencies that serve individuals and families in need. 

“We are very proud to have received the top honor in the Human Services category of the 2013 Computerworld Honors Program,” said Kevin Mullins, executive director and co-founder, Community Plates.  “We appreciate that IDG’s Computerworld recognizes the important role our disruptive technology is playing in helping to achieve our goal of ending food insecurity in America.”

Visit the website and register to become a Food Runner, then login to the app via their website, communityplates.org, and take a peek the next time you have some time on your hands and can consider rescuing food to feed those in need.

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