Startup aims to battle food waste in Russia

A Russian-start up is hoping to take on mounting food waste with a smartphone.

The EatMe app offers a discount on food from restaurants and bakeries that might have otherwise ended up in the trash.

Its founder, Rudolph An, said it's already helped save around 700 kilos of food since it launched in St Petersburg.

He said the app combines his two favorite things - food and ecology:

(SOUNDBITE) (Russian) EAT ME FOUNDER, RUDOLPH AN, SAYING:

"It (EatMe project) combined the two of my favorite issues - ecology and food. (And I thought why could it not become a business? I discovered that there is a start-up in the West that saves food. They developed an app that allows buying food with a discount at the end of the day. And I thought: Yeah, that is a cool idea. We need something like that in Russia. I researched the market, looked at the amount of waste and understood that it is huge."

The app offers tasty discounts - sometimes up to 70 percent of their original price.

Users say it's cost-effective and helps save the planet.

And eco-conscious businesses say it's helping them combat waste:

(SOUNDBITE) (Russian) SHIFT SUPERVISOR IN BAKERY, OLEG ABRAMOV, SAYING:

"It is a big problem (food waste) because lots of food is being discarded. And for me, as a person, it is very upsetting that someone's work is simply going to waste. And beyond that, And From an economic perspective, this service helps us to save money by recycling our waste."

EatMe has already expanded to Moscow, and is looking at other eco-conscious cities as well.