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

Powdies: Waste to Nutrition for All

Powdies hope to channels wastes in fresh produce into nutritional and delicious supplement for all.

Photo of Zhiqi Wang
5 4

Written by

Lead Applicant Organization Name

Powdies Ltd

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?


Lead Applicant: In what country are you located?

United Kingdom

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

Cambridge, Oxford, London area

What country is your selected Place located in?

United Kingdom

Describe your relationship to the place you’ve selected.

We have selected this place because there is such a big demand for more sustainable solutions to bring quality and affordable nutrition to people. With our increasingly busy lives, people find it tremendously difficult to consume fresh produces as part of our diet. This area has the highest concentration of like minded people who care about environmental sustainability and access to nutrition. Therefore, this will be a great place to start to generate interest and test feasibility before reaching to other part of the world with the same vision. 

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.

This area is home of some of the greatest intellectual discoveries of mankind and is also a hugely important commercial engine for the world. With rapid urbanisation, people have grown increasingly distant from agriculture and food production. 

People eat fast because of the general lack of time. Despite the huge variety of food available, many young professionals and large family choose, either consciously or otherwise, against eating sufficient fruit and vegetables. 

The climate in the UK is not suitable to grow many fruits and vegetables. In fact, due to its proximity to europe, it only produces 30% of its total consumption. Therefore, in view of shrinking resources and change political positions, ensuring food sustainability needs to be a priority.

People here are increasingly aware of the inequalities in the food system in the countries and is take active measures to ensure accessibility and affordability. of food 

Underconsumption of fruit and vegetable has become a huge health burden on the national healthcare system, causing it an additional £4 billion annually. 

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.

Environment: Rapid rate of urbanisation and degradation of land resources means that food production is likely to be limited. 

Diets: Diets have become increasing rich in calories, but poor nutritionally through different forms of food processing. 

Economics: Income disparity likely to increase, making quality food more expensive and less accessible for families on the lower end of income spectrum. 

Culture: global exchange of cultures, people are more willing to try new food from different parts of world. 

Technology: Recent advances in technology to improve quality of food

Policy: More well-rounded policy to ensure food accessibility. 

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

Environment: Solution reduces food waste and hence carbon emissions 

Diets: increase variety in fresh produces and intake of micronutrients  

Economics: make fresh product consumption more affordable

Culture: Develop a product that is already part of the existing diet

Technology: Introduce dehydration technology, enabled by recent advances in infocomm techniques. 

 Policy: Increase effectiveness of policy implementation by overcoming perishability of fresh produce.

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.

With the availability of these products, fresh produces are no longer limited by their shelf life and can part a greater part in people's life to promote a healthier diet. This product gives people control over their diets, helping them make more considered decisions on fruit and vegetables. 

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

Powdies is an ethically driven social enterprise with a vision of improving nutrient intake for the general public, as well as the undernourished population. Our product is a ‘fruit and vegetable powdered drink mix’ which conveniently supplements 5 of a person’s 5-A-Day. In addition to improving public health, our business also aims to reduce food wastage by sourcing surplus raw ingredients from food providers.

As a social enterprise, we create social impact on two fronts. Our core paying customers are young professionals in the UK who are health or environmentally conscious. By purchasing our product, they actively contribute towards reducing food wastage. Through a cross-subsidization model, all profits generated from our sales will be used to distribute our products to local beneficiaries, such as the homeless and low-income families.

Our customers are health and ethically conscious working professionals, consisting of 7.8 million people in the UK. The fruit juice and smoothie is a growing market in the UK, worth £5.1 billion. By selling our powdered drink at 1.20£, we aim to break even within 2 years with an investment sum of £40k. By our third year, a projected 200k units will be sold to generate a revenue of £240k, with a profit of £85k.

The drinks segment is populated with a great variety of existing products. Our greatest competitors are nutritional smoothies and juices producers including Innocent Smoothies and PepsiCo’s Tropicana and Naked Juice Smoothies. Powdies is introducing a new type of beverage – easy-to-carry powder drinks. Our product is the only product on the market that offers vitamins and nutrients from 5 portions of fruits and veg. Apart from yet-to-launch Oozedrinks, Powdies is the only company that positions itself to source almost exclusively from surplus food and battling food waste with our production model head-on.

On the technology side, we are integrating microwave convection dehydration as a fundamental technology that promotes efficiency of process and nutritional preservation of products. In the next phase, we direct our investments into product formulation, prototype, market analysis and developing our dehydration technology. This investment will allow us to initiate production by Q2 in 2020 with initial launch at business center cafeterias and WeWork offices.

People in the selected area actively wants to healthier lifestyle with more fresh produces in their diet and we want to help people achieve this. We want to work with the community to develop formulation that encourages consumption and utilises local ingredients. 

How did you hear about the Food System Vision Prize?

  • Website


Join the conversation:

Photo of Stephanie Robson

Dear fellow food visionaries

There are several of us who have chosen London as the place for our vision for 2050. Inspired by all the submissions, we would love to invite all fellow London teams we are aware off (see list below) for show and tell evening. Thus we would like to invite you to a get together with each team presenting their vision in 5 mins pecha kucha style and discussions / drinks afterwards.

Let us know if you would be up for that and had time - we would love to welcome you on Thursday 27/02/2020 from 18:00- 19:30 (and onwards in the pub for those who would like to continue the conversations). Please email for further details.

If you are aware of any other London based projects, would you be able to point us in their direction as we would like to invite them too!

• Powdies: Waste to Nutrition for All
• Mimica’s Food System Vision for Hackney
• Plantville
• Good Food London: From global to local
• The Orchard Project
• Upsetting the apple cart: Birth of a human-centered food system

View all comments