Every year 1,555 million tons of food is wasted worldwide. Among the foodstuffs that are thrown away, fruits and vegetables occupy a prominent place as they make up 42% of this waste. Hoang Vi Grad, a 38-year-old resident of Melun (Seine-et-Marne) decided to change careers to provide a concrete solution to this scourge, on its scale. She developed the Pommy concept, which consists of turning unsold fruit from the supermarket into artisanal fruit puree without added sugars. A way to tackle food waste and reconcile our taste buds with ugly fruit.
The idea came to him during the first incarceration, the Actu.fr site reports. Like many others during this period, Hoang Vi Grad questioned his professional life in view of his environmental concerns. “I was concerned about my children’s future, for the planet we would leave them behind,” tells this mother of 2 children in this presentation text. While learning about food waste, she comes across a figure that shocks her: 10 million tons of products are thrown away every year. From that moment on, this former consultant decided to drop everything to create a company to revalue unsold fruit.
Original and waste-free fruit puree
The concept devised by Hoang Vi Grad, called Pommy, consists of recovering raw materials from supermarkets in Île-de-France to convert them into artisanal fruit purees. “Once certain fruits are a bit black, we tend to stop eating them. When our ancestors had overripe or ugly fruit, the magic recipe was to puree them.”, explains Hoang Vi Gard to Actu.fr. With Pommy it is indeed a question of “fruit puree” and not compotes, as the final products will be without added sugars, unlike compotes, Melunaise specifies.
The entrepreneur was recently allowed to test her project, which is supported by the business incubator France Active. She bought 100 kilos of fruit from a supermarket to make the first Pommy puree, artisanal and local. Hoang Vi Grad teamed up with chef Marie Soria, from Ptel et Chabot in Paris, to create flavor associations that would please customers. During this test phase, the latter was therefore able to discover apple-strawberry puree with Lebanese black lemon or even pineapple kumquat and star anise. Hundreds of jars of puree have already been produced and all sold in the participating supermarket.
A fundraiser to increase production
Hoang Vi Grad now wants to continue the development of Pommy and plans to develop and eventually market a dozen original recipes. It appealed to supermarkets around Melun to find new suppliers. Goal: to collect almost a ton of unsold fruit every month to make puree. The entrepreneur has also launched a crowdfunding campaign on the Miimosa platform to help her convert her garage into a production workshop. This would allow her to produce and sell more zero-waste fruit purees, which she would like to distribute in supermarkets, as well as in local supermarkets or to order, “at affordable prices”indicates Actu.fr.
If you would like to support the Pommy project, you can contribute to the fundraiser by clicking here. The fundraiser will run through March 7.