Jasmine Crowe is the opposite of an accidental entrepreneur. She followed her passion—and her purpose—to become a social entrepreneur, founding Goodr, the food waste management solution that gets surplus food from the companies that would otherwise throw it away into the hands of the nonprofits that desperately need it.
It all started when Crowe moved to Atlanta six years ago. “I was just driving through downtown and saw hundreds of people that were experiencing homelessness on the streets,” she says. “I felt really compelled that I had to do something.”
So she started making meals—buying and cooking the food herself and serving the hungry first in the streets and then in a pop-up restaurant.
“I’ve invested in this fight since 2013, personally cooking and serving over 80,000 meals to people experiencing hunger, and it was through this that the idea for Goodr was birthed,” she says.
Crowe knew there needed to be a way to tackle hunger on a larger scale, despite all the good she was doing.
“Around the same time, Uber Eats and DoorDash and Postmates were really starting to penetrate the Atlanta market. It dawned on me that we were spending millions of dollars to create new technologies to get food to people who never have issues with access to food, but what were we doing with all the millions of people that are never knowing where their next meal is coming from?”
“Every year in this country, 42 million people go hungry. Yet at the same time, we waste 72 billion pounds of perfectly good food,” she continues. “And that’s when I decided that there was a big opportunity for Goodr.”
The problem, however, had always been how do you get that food from where it is to where it needs to be.
“Hunger is not an issue of scarcity. It’s a matter of logistics,” Crowe says. “At Goodr, we’re solving the surplus food supply chain problem, ensuring the safe delivery of this food from businesses that have it to nonprofit organizations and people that need it, all while allowing businesses for the first time to be able to track, account, and earn from their donations. We focus on connecting the business and the nonprofit, and our logistics platform is what we built that does that for us.”
The solution was blockchain, an emerging technology that acts as a secure ledger. It means that companies can not only securely track the donations of their surplus food, but they can also realize significant tax deductions using Goodr’s IRS-compliant platform.
Being a social entrepreneur means doing good but also making money. The business model works because companies aren’t just engaging in charity; they’re hiring a more efficient vendor to manage their waste: “I see Goodr as a food waste management company,” she says. “The businesses are already paying somebody to throw the food away. There’s always a fee that’s being paid to eliminate trash.”
Crowe has managed to create a win-win-win situation of improving her clients’ bottom line, reducing waste, and feeding the hungry.
“This is a perfect example of passion meeting purpose. I’m at the intersection of that,” the social entrepreneur says. “A lot of people start companies because they think it’s going to make money or they think it’s going to be cool or they’re bored. I really started this because I was already doing it and this is how I can do more of what I love doing.”
“You can do well by doing good, and I think that I’ve been able to prove that.”
The Profiles of Principled Entrepreneurship video series, presented by Koch Industries, focuses on companies that emphasize value creation, innovation, self-determination, and integrity to drive long-term success while developing products and services to help people improve their lives.