It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to realize soggy food sucks. But it might just take one to solve the problem.
Former aerospace engineer Bill Birgen started Soggy Food Sucks to combat the issue of food getting soft and soggy after it travels. To do so, he developed a patch you can stick to the food carton to absorb condensation, thereby keeping food crisp and fresh-tasting while it’s in transit. In other words, no more limp delivery french fries or lackluster restaurant leftovers.
Soggy Food Sucks is one of the 13 companies that will be pitching in the Startup Showcase at the Smart Kitchen Summit (SKS) this October (meet them all here!). We did a little Q&A session with Birgen to learn more about his impassioned goal to do one thing: eliminate soggy food from the world, forever.
This Q&A had been edited for clarity.
The Spoon: First thing’s first: give us your 15-second elevator pitch.
Bill Birgen: Food taken home from a restaurant is often ruined by condensation. This patented product stops this, with the first of its kind, high performance, non-chemical desiccant.
What inspired you to start Soggy Food Sucks?
I’ve been packing my lunch with this product for over 10 years, and I don’t like slimy, wilted salads for lunch.
What’s the most challenging part of getting a food tech startup off the ground?
Probably the money. I bootstrapped everything myself because fundraising is such a huge distraction. Providing my own funding meant I had to go slow.
The other big challenge was optimizing the customers’ value proposition. This took the longest time. There were a lot of non-scientific friends, advisers and marketing consultants who kept telling me to make the product “sexier”, which would have been a pivot away from value.
Objective performance validation was a distant 3rd challenge.
How will Soggy Food Sucks change the day-to-day life of its users?
Imagine a world without soggy food. Imagine crunchy freedom fries, crisp fried chicken, and salads that snap with each bite you take. This is my vision for the future of food delivery, and the ultimate user experience that I will bring to the world.
What’s next for Soggy Food Sucks?
Next up will be limited production, sales and deliveries of our small batch production. I will collect letters of intent from customers at the SKS and use these to leverage financing for a full-scale production. I am also re-visiting the licensing path.
Thanks, Bill! Get your tickets to SKS to hear him and 12 other budding food tech entrepreneurs pitch at our Startup Showcase, then see his anti-soggy food patch in action.