OpenIDEO is an open innovation platform. Join our global community to solve big challenges for social good. Sign Up / Login or Learn more

Head of Operations

Transforming the way the world makes food.

Photo of Jason Peretz
1 0

Written by

Lead Applicant Organization Name

Galley Solutions, Inc.

Lead Applicant Organization Type

  • Small company (under 50 employees)

Website of Legally Registered Entity

How long have you / your team been working on this Vision?

  • 1-3 years

Lead Applicant: In what city or town are you located?

San Diego

Lead Applicant: In what country are you located?

United States of America

Your Selected Place: what’s the name of the Place you’re developing a Vision for?

San Diego, California, a city in the United States 372.4mi^2.

What country is your selected Place located in?

United States of America

Describe your relationship to the place you’ve selected.

Galley was founded in San Diego, California, and selected this area to test food waste mitigation efforts, first. It is important for us to reduce food waste in our local area in which wastes several million tons of food per year before replicating our model to other areas.

As a food system software company, we are currently optimizing food waste mitigation efforts in one specific area, and, then, we will replicate our food waste mitigation model at scale. Naturally, we will have to tweak certain features in our software to adapt to certain circumstances, but the core features should be replicable.

Logistically, we also started with San Diego by partnering with a non-profit catering company and a for-profit restaurant to track how much food they currently waste and developing features to reduce the amount of food that they waste. It is easiest for us to coordinate with San Diego local companies as our grant with the state of California provides us with very limited funding.

Describe the People and Place: Provide information that would be helpful for an outsider who has never been there and may have no context about this Place to better understand the area.

San Diego is an extremely diverse city composed of, approximately: (1) 34% Hispanics or Latino, (2) 5.5% African Americans, (3) 1.3% American Indians, (4) 4.5% Asian, and (5) 5% other. People eat foods of all kinds, there are areas in (1) Kearny Mesa that have a plethora of Asian cuisines, (2) La Jolla and Del Mar that have Mediterranean and Indian cuisine, and (3) downtown San Diego that has essentially any type of food that people would seek. (,CA/PST045218)

One of the biggest transitions that is impacting our community is corporate social responsibility. Galley has more purpose to it than to make a profit. We are also looking to make an impact on the community around us and in the world by reducing food waste. The less food that we waste, the more food that can be distributed elsewhere, and the fewer Greenhouse Gasses that hit our atmosphere.

Agriculture plays a very big role in the San Diego economy, in 2015 it contributed about $2.88 billion to the San Diego county economy and employed over 16,000 jobs. Additionally, the community in San Diego has increasingly started to favor organic and locally grown food. There are certain meal delivery companies that ship locally grown organic produce directly to consumers' doors. 

San Diego is a health-conscious community and a few of the current popular diet trends are: (1) consuming organic food, (2) vegetarian diets, and (3) ketogenic diets. Organic food consumption has become extremely popular and many consumers are willing to pay a premium to eat such food. Organic food can be consumed in any diet that people undergo. Vegetarian diets have become increasingly more popular and there are documentaries, such as “Game Changers,” that include many influencers speaking toward eating little to no meat. Ketogenic diets, as opposed to Vegetarian Diets, have been increasingly popular in certain communities that are influenced by certain famous social media influencers. Social media plays a huge role in influencing the lives of people in our community, and likely the rest of the world. 

What is the approximate size of your Place, in square kilometers? (New question, not required)


What is the estimated population (current 2020) in your Place?


Challenges: Describe the current (2020) and the future (2050) challenges that your food system faces.

The challenges that our food system faces, currently, include: (1) food waste, (2) labor waste, and (3) lack of software solutions.

In regards to food waste, San Diego currently wastes millions of tons of food per year. There are many programs that are currently being set up to prevent food waste and redistribute food that is not being consumed. An additional problem occurs when food cannot be redistributed. So, the root of the problem is that a food provider, likely, ordered too much food, to begin with.

Labor waste is an additional problem because people are performing practices that are inefficient. When people spend much of their day doing tasks that should be automated, they spend less time with their families and that leads to a lower quality of life. Many of our potential customers say that they spend up to 30 hours a week planning the correct amount of food to purchase from its vendors and in many bigger companies, there are several people who spend 40 hours a week, as a full-time job, trying to accurately plan how much food to order from a vendor.

Software has not advanced in our food system as people have relied on antiquated software for the food industry that is not properly customized to their food system. Additionally, we see many companies in San Diego spend the majority of their time managing recipes on excel spreadsheets and/or pen and paper. Technology has not advanced in the food industry, in an automated fashion, as can be seen in other industries. 

In 2050, our environment faces a huge issue if we continue on this path of wasting food. We do have certain programs in San Diego to redistribute waste and research is being done to make waste have a less harmful impact on the environment. But, the Food System should focus on not wasting this food in the first place. 

Address the Challenges: Describe how your Vision will address the challenges described in the previous question.

Galley is a data-driven software solution for non-commercial and commercial kitchens aimed at optimizing the entire food production process with its powerful yet simple cloud-based platform. From its preliminary use, it is apparent that Galley has the potential to greatly reduce food waste. Given that food waste prevention is an emerging benefit of Galley, it is under-researched. Galley’s reduces fod waste before it starts, as well as along the entire chain of food production.

With the tools at hand, kitchens are challenged to effectively store menus and recipes, communicate recipe preparation needs, see synergies across recipes, link ordering processes to production trends, and definitively know what items are in inventory. Many kitchens use spreadsheets, standalone programs, and sometimes even pen and paper for these tasks. Galley is inherently focused on recipe data, which drives production planning and purchasing. To date, no other platform matches Galley’s approach.

Our software platform gives users tools to optimize their production processes, inventory management, and purchasing. Leanpath, a hardware-based program for food waste management, will help measure Galley’s waste prevention performance. Galley has earned a $300,000 grant from the state of California and is directly allocating these funds R&D in food waste mitigation efforts. 

Given anecdotal information from Galley’s current users, Galley is already preventing food waste in a substantial way. Existing Galley functionalities contributing to prevention are: 1) production process organization (prevents production errors) 2) forecasting (prevents overproduction, one of the leading causes of waste), and 3) inventory transparency (prevents food items from spoiling before use or becoming lost). 

Additionally, we save food operators hours a week. In particular, before using Galley one food operator spent about 24 hours a day planning the food that her one restaurant needed to order for the following week.

Too see how our software food-system works, please see this video:

High Level Vision: With these challenges addressed, now provide a high level description of how the Place and the lives of its People will be different than they are now.

Galley has a software product aimed towards impacting restaurants across all of San Diego. If we assume a very conservative 1% market penetration in San Diego with its 6,000 restaurants by the end of 2020, then Galley will be used in at least 60 restaurants. We will practically ensure this market penetration by giving Galley away for about 50 foodservice organizations. From 2021-2027, Galley will likely prevent 7,302,960 lbs of food waste in San Diego. See this document for such calculations:

Galley will not only impact restaurants and foodservice organizations in San Diego but will extend to those in other California cities. We will very conservatively assume that by January 2021, Galley is in another 100 restaurants across California (which is less than 0.25% market penetration, and in reality, we have much more ambitious targets than that). This will equate to an additional 12,171,600 lbs of food waste prevented from 2021-2027 in just California alone. Galley already has active users across the globe and the waste mitigation and prevention features developed as a result of this study will enable our growing customer base to drastically impact their own food waste mitigation efforts.

Full Vision: How do you describe your Vision for a regenerative and nourishing food future for your Place and People for 2050?

The non-commercial and commercial food industry has been largely underserved by modern, easy-to-use enterprise software. Large commissary kitchens responsible for producing millions of meals a year are almost entirely run on pencil and paper, antiquated software, or Google Sheets. Across all sub-categories of commercial food, there is a lack of a clear go-to software solution to run back-of-house operations efficiently.

Galley provides a modern, web-based software solution to support these large-scale food operations, bringing insights into their core business data and providing intuitive software-driven workflows to make everyday tasks more efficient and accurate. Companies who adopt Galley into their operation see an immediate return on investment with streamlined data capture and storage, ultimately giving them the insights into each aspect of their operation to allow the operators to fine-tune processes to increase quality, decrease waste, and increase profitability.

Galley takes an entirely different approach that our food operators have said is the only “right way.” We focus, first and foremost, on the core data of a food operation: recipes and ingredients. We have built beautiful and easy-to-use tools to empower chefs, not accountants, to provide and maintain this core data. Taking this core-data-first approach guarantees that the data stays up-to-date and relevant, establishing a solid foundation to build secondary workflows and data analytics. Ultimately, Galley aims to be a long-term, all-encompassing software platform for all back-of-house data and workflows.

By 2050, we will have set up a system in which automates food ordering from vendors in the most efficient and effective fashion. By 2027, we aim to reduce food waste just in certain areas of California by about 7 million pounds. Additionally, we will leverage our software platform to implement real-time inventory tracking through our software with AI food recognition cameras that track the inflow and the outflow of ingredient inventory. Our plan is to solve the world's food problems with technology.

I have attached how Galley and one of our partner's Leanpath reduce food waste at one of our customers.

How did you hear about the Food System Vision Prize?

  • Email
View more

Attachments (2)


Picture of our Customer Implementation manager showing how Galley can reduce food waste to our partner Olivia at EcoCaters.


Picture of Galley Implementing LeanPath at a Customer to run food waste mitigation experiments.

1 comment

Join the conversation:

Photo of Lauren Ito

Hi Jason Peretz great to see you joining the Prize!

We noticed your submission is currently unpublished. Was this your intention? We'd love to have your submission included in the Prize. Even if you've not started populating your Vision just yet, by publishing your submission you can make it public for other teams in your region to see, get in touch and possibly even collaborate with you.

You can publish it by hitting the "Publish" button at the top of your post. You can also update your Vision at any time before 31 January 2020 by clicking on the "Edit Contribution" on top. If you need inspiration or guidance, take a look at the Food Vision Prize Toolkit. linked here:

Look forward to seeing your Vision evolve through the coming weeks.