In June, we officially launched the #SoylentforGood program our company-wide initiative that incorporates our collective efforts to combat food insecurity and enables us and our community to tackle hunger in new, innovative ways.
On Monday, October 16, 2017, in honor of World Food Day we will be donating 50 percent of revenue on all new orders exclusively on Soylent.com to World Food Program USA to support the U.N. World Food Programme’s Innovation Accelerator and One America Appeal. All donations will be split equally between WFP USA and One America Appeal.
Our contributions to World Food Program USA began more than a year ago, and we are proud to foster efforts that have provided hundreds of thousands of meals around the globe. Soylent’s mission is to leverage science and technology to provide complete, convenient and sustainable nutrition to the world. We recognize that accomplishing this goal requires partnering with other organizations pursuing new and innovative solutions to these issues. Therefore, we have directed our contributions to the World Food Program’s Innovation Accelerator. Launched in 2016, the WFP Innovation Accelerator identifies, supports and scales high potential solutions to hunger worldwide. We look forward to highlighting some of these innovative solutions in subsequent posts.
The One America Appeal is a joint appeal that was originally launched by all five living former American Presidents to encourage their fellow citizens to support recovery efforts from Hurricane Harvey — which inundated the Texas Gulf Coast with unprecedented flooding. This special appeal has been expanded to include areas most affected by Hurricanes Irma and Maria.
We continue to seek partnerships and opportunities to provide assistance to our community, especially after major natural disasters. For instance, in the wake of Hurricane Harvey, we worked with our retail partners to donate over six thousand meals to the Houston area to assist in the recovery.
Your World Food Day purchase is an important step in ending the cycle of food insecurity across the globe, and we are proud to share this mission with all our Soylent community. If you would like more information on #SoylentforGood, or have ideas that Soylent can help bring complete nutrition to your community, please reach out to email@example.com. Thank you for your continued support!
*Eligible times are from 12:01am to 11:59pm PST
**Residents of IL, MS, MA, SC, AL may not participate.
On Monday, October 16, 2017, you stepped up to recognize World Food Day with Soylent and our giving community. With 50 percent of revenue on all new orders exclusively on Soylent.com going to World Food Program USA to support the U.N. World Food Programme’s Innovation Accelerator and One America Appeal, your thoughtful purchases contributed to tens of thousands of dollars donated to these important organizations. The entire Soylent team extends a heartfelt thank you for your generous support.
We also wanted to take this moment to provide some additional details on our #SoylentforGood initiative, and give you a bit more insight into where your funds have been directed. The U.N. World Food Programme identifies, nurtures and scales-up bold solutions to challenges in humanitarian and development contexts. The program currently supports more than 30 internal innovations and external start-ups across all WFP operations, with a global goal of a world with zero hunger.
Below is a blog post from the WFP that we wanted to share to give our community a sense of the wonderful work they are supporting with their Soylent orders:
Innovation Is Transforming The Way Refugees Grow Food
A changing climate. Raging wars. New challenges. In order to create a future of Zero Hunger, the World Food Programme must constantly adapt.
That’s why the world’s leading humanitarian agency solving hunger is working with the public and private sector to develop better tools and strategies to feed families in need through its Innovation Accelerator.
Launched in 2016 and based in Germany, WFP’s Innovation Accelerator identifies, supports and scales up solutions to address global hunger, including a virtual farmers market in Zambia and “food computers” in Jordan.
Now, in one of the most remote refugee camps in the world, WFP has introduced a smart new way to tackle food insecurity among refugees who lack access to land: Hydroponic agriculture.
Located in five camps near the town of Tindouf in Western Algeria, Sahrawi refugees live in a harsh and isolated desert environment. With limited opportunities for self-reliance, refugees in the area depend on humanitarian assistance to survive. At the same time, one-quarter of the population suffers from chronic malnutrition.
Nina Schroder, Project Manager at WFP’s Innovation Accelerator, explains the vicious cycle of malnutrition in the Sahrawi refugee camps.
“Animals play very important role in their culture, but also for their diet. As they themselves are completely dependent on food aid, they very rarely have the means to actually feed their animals. So very often, [the animals] actually end up eating garbage, leading to very poor nutritional of the meat and milk they produce.”
To ensure that animals can provide the necessary nutrition for people living in camps, WFP is reinforcing its food assistance activities with hydroponic growing in Algeria. This low-tech, small-scale project builds on existing expertise to improve food security and contribute to resilience in the camps.
In only seven days, fresh green barley fodder can be produced from seeds using minimal quantities of water and no fertilizer, with a daily harvest of up to 130 pounds per day per unit. One unit can feed up to 20 animals, supporting approximately seven families.
The units are run by a groups of Sahrawi refugees, while receiving technical and business training. Different from the traditional way of distributing food basket to the refugee, this approach is highly innovative and offers refugees the chance to sustain themselves and become progressively less reliant on international aid.
New innovations like these have the potential to transform the lives of vulnerable populations across the world and address the roots of hunger, strengthening food systems, speeding up humanitarian response times, harnessing local knowledge and making funds stretch even further.
Alice Manos, WFP USA
This blog post originally appeared on wfpusa.org and has been republished with permission.
Your World Food Day purchase contributed to an important step in the ending the cycle of food insecurity across the globe and supported relief efforts here in the U.S. and its territories. We are proud to share this mission with all our community. If you would like more information on Soylent for Good, or just want to get involved, please reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you for your continued support!
When we introduced Soylent Drink in August of 2015, we wanted to get our new format into the hands of excited customers as soon as possible. At the time, the best option was to use existing, off-the-shelf stock bottles.
After all, the innovation was inside the bottle, and the bottle was just a bottle. But in the same spirit of iterative design that inspires us to continuously improve our Drink formulas, we immediately began working on improving the packaging that Drink came in, as well. After nearly two years of development, we have finally cracked it: a bottle that packs over 15% more efficiently in a box, introduces a simple snap cap opening, fits more neatly in your fridge, dents less, and still provides the same complete nutrition you have come to expect from Soylent.
Before we dive into the details of our new bottle, let’s talk about why most bottles are round. Many internet commenters have correctly identified that beverage containers are often round due to pressure - a pressurized cylindrical container pushes outward with equal force in all directions. This is crucial for pressurized beverages. However, Soylent is not pressurized. The number one reason this container was round was it is the simplest bottle shape to move through a production line. Round bottles are easier to wash, move smoothly around corners, and don’t have a front or back, making them easy to label. However, round bottles do introduce some problems after production - problems we wanted to solve. Plus, we like a challenge.
Here at Soylent, we are all about creating the most efficient food of the future, and when you’re dealing with direct to consumer shipping, wasted space is the enemy. One of the main drivers for a sqround bottle was packaging efficiency. Until we invent teleportation, Soylent will likely be packed in a rectangular box. Since circles and right angles don’t really play well together, we were wasting a bit of space. A square shape could minimize the wasted space in the box by replacing empty air with delicious Soylent, resulting in a more-than 15% smaller (and more efficient) box! That’s one point for sqround.
The original round bottle we used for Soylent Drink was designed to work smoothly in a specific manufacturing process (aseptic) and to support the weight of a few layers of boxes upon it while it travelled peacefully on a pallet, in a truck, headed to a 7-Eleven or Target. Soylent’s direct-to-consumer shipping model, however, introduces a great deal of unpredictability and abuse to the system. We can’t ask your delivery person to gingerly place a more than 40 pound box on your front stoop. Because of this, you may have noticed a few of the bottles you’ve enjoyed in the past had a nicely sized dent on the shoulder or around the bottom. Well, two flat sides are less likely to dent one another than are two cylinders. Sqround: 2, Circles: 0.
@soylent hey, almost all the bottles in my shipment are bent / dented up. is this normal?
While we’re on the topic of dents, let’s talk about paneling. In the past, most of our bottles arrived to customers with a large flat section on one side of a bottle. This is called paneling. Paneling occurs for a variety of reasons including: temperature change, elevation and pressure change, or oxygen absorption by the product. Whatever the reason, the amount of air in the bottle fluctuates after filling, usually creating a slight vacuum inside. In the presence of this vacuum, the weakest section of the bottle (the long, straight section of the profile) will pull in and create what looks like a dent, or panel, in a round bottle. When a sqround bottle faces these same forces, it actually becomes more square, arriving to the customer with four beautiful, intentionally flat sides. Game, sqround.
So why sqround? Why not a crisp cornered square bottle, you ask? Obviously, a perfect square would be most efficient in terms of packing. Squares, however, come with their own set of challenges. When bottles travel down the manufacturing line on their way to your door, they are constantly moving from single file to big groups, around curves and corners, and jostling into place. A bunch of round bottles will roll off one another and travel smoothly around corners, but a bunch of square bottles have a tendency to lock up with one another, kind of like a losing game of Tetris.
By generously rounding the corners of a square (to the industry-coined “sqround”) we solve these production line issues. In fact, the bottles are designed closer to round than you see in the finished product, but after the paneling takes place, they pull into the clean shape you’ll eventually hold in your hand. There were a few other important constraints that we had to consider like overall dimensions and the neck of the bottle remaining unchanged. Oh, and we wanted to finally do away with that pesky plastic wrap over the cap. Taking all of this into consideration, the fun work could begin.
We explored a wide range of reference material and design inspiration when sitting down to figure out the overall look and feel of the future of our packaging. One of the first images we conjured up was the milkman. Door to door staple food delivery was a hallmark of the 50’s, with milk, eggs, meats, and other perishables delivered right to your front stoop. Well now it’s 2017 and we’re delivering the only staple food you need right to your door. It made sense, then, to mimic some of the shapes and curves from the packaging of one of the most ubiquitous staple foods of modern history - the humble milk bottle.
Another reference point was Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey. This classic is ripe with timeless design and a beautiful image of the future (visually speaking, at least - the whole Hal bit is a little more frightening than what we’re hoping for). The sets and props were so thoughtfully and impeccably designed that they are still relevant today, almost 50 years later. There are also some great designs for prepackaged space foods sprinkled throughout the film.
Lastly, we did our best to follow the “less but better” teachings of 1960’s Braun designs. These enduring designs are known for their stripped down features and clean lines. No unnecessary buttons or extraneous curves, just what you need; everything in its place.
This bottle has been in the works for over two years now, and we’re so thrilled to finally get it into your hands. We put a lot of thought into each detail, but in the spirit of iteration (and maybe a little bit of perfectionism), we can promise you that we won’t stop improving the design of the bottle, just as we won’t stop improving the formula it holds. Let’s all raise a sqround bottle and toast the future!
About the Author:
John Zelek is Senior Creative at Rosa Foods. He works on all kinds of creative projects for Soylent, including the new bottles.
Rosa Foods, the makers of Soylent, today announced that the Company will test its suite of nutritionally complete, ready-to-drink meals at 18 participating 7-Eleven® stores in the Greater Los Angeles area beginning Monday, July 10, 2017.
The 7-Eleven locations currently plan to sell three Soylent flavors: Cacao, Cafe Coffiest and the new Cafe Chai.
“It is exciting that the demand for our breakthrough line of drinkable meals has moved beyond e-commerce,” said Rob Rhinehart, Soylent Founder and CEO. “This new collaboration with 7-Eleven will make Soylent an even better option for customers looking for convenience without sacrificing their health. We are thrilled to be working alongside the talented 7-Eleven team and look forward to building our retail presence nationwide.”
The 7-Eleven deal marks the first step in Soylent’s retail distribution plan. Products will be available at the following 7-Eleven locations in the Greater Los Angeles Area, subject to change:
1100 North La Cienega Blvd., Los Angeles
7600 Sunset Blvd., Los Angeles
5600 San Vicente Blvd., Los Angeles
5279 West Olympic Blvd., Los Angeles
10834 Santa Monica Blvd., Los Angeles
11656 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles
11666 West Olympic Blvd., Los Angeles
3018 West Manchester Blvd., Inglewood
610 South Rampart Blvd., Los Angeles
3450 Overland Ave., Los Angeles
1516 Lincoln Blvd., Venice
630 Wilshire Blvd., Santa Monica
4436 Sepulveda Blvd., Culver City
5880 West Manchester Avenue, Los Angeles
1519 South Bundy Dr., Los Angeles
2541 South Barrington Ave., Los Angeles
11299 West Washington Blvd., Culver City
11075 West Olympic Blvd., West Los Angeles
“Soylent is a differentiated product for the on-the-go, millennial. It is a great example of a product that has reached online success in a short period, and we are excited to collaborate with Soylent to bring the drinkable meals to our stores in a single serving,” said Todd McFarland, 7-Eleven senior product director for vault.
Soylent’s line of ready-to-drink products are designed from the ground-up to provide the vitamins, minerals, fats, carbohydrates and protein that the body needs - all in a convenient, ready-to-drink package.
The Soylent team is thrilled to announce the latest flavors in its suite of nutritionally complete, ready-to-drink products: Cafe Vanilla and Cafe Chai.
These selections join Coffiest in Soylent’s new Cafe line of caffeinated beverages, now available for purchase at www.soylent.com in the U.S. and Canada. Sales on Amazon.com will begin in the coming weeks.
“Getting a good breakfast is a pain point for many people. With Coffiest, we made it easy for our customers to start the day right,” said Soylent Founder and CEO Rob Rhinehart. “Now we’ve improved the variety of our enhanced beverages with new flavors.”
Cafe Vanilla and Cafe Chai, like their predecessors, are designed from the ground-up to provide the vitamins, minerals, fats, carbohydrates, and protein that the body needs - all in a convenient, ready-to-drink package. Cafe Vanilla’s essence of roasted coffee with just a hint of vanilla, alongside Cafe Chai’s robust blend of aromatic spices, are the perfect companions to Coffiest. All flavors in the new Cafe line continue to provide the added boost of caffeine in conjunction with the relaxing benefits of L-theanine to promote increased cognitive performance. Each bottle includes:
20 percent of the daily recommended values for all essential vitamins and mineral.
A macronutrient profile of 47 percent calories from lipids, 33 percent calories from carbohydrates and 20 percent calories from protein.
Approximately 150 mg of caffeine in Cafe Vanilla and 30 mg in Cafe Chai.
75 mg of L-Theanine in Cafe Vanilla and 25 mg in Cafe Chai.
Each case of 12 bottles can be purchased online at www.soylent.com and Amazon.com for $37.05 USD for subscribers and $39 USD for one-time orders. A portion of all Soylent sales will go to the World Food Program USA. For specific inquiries related or additional information on the Soylent Cafe line and comprehensive product information pages, please visit our FAQ.
Throughout 2016, Soylent donated over 1 million meals, but we won’t stop there. Today we are launching Soylent for Good, our company-wide initiative that incorporates our collective efforts to combat food insecurity,
so that we can begin to forge a path that enables us and our community to tackle hunger in new, innovative ways. We at Soylent want to live in a world where everyone has access to complete nutrition.
The building blocks of Soylent for Good began when we first entered the fight against malnutrition, just over a year ago. When we announced our support for World Food Program USA (WFP USA), our financial support for the organization helped provide hundreds of thousands of school meals around the globe. In 2017, we will continue to improve the food system through innovation and renew our support for WFP USA in their mission to make hunger history. Our funding will be directed to WFP’s Innovation Accelerator to help scale high potential solutions to hunger worldwide. In addition to our international endeavors, Soylent donated hundreds of thousands of meals to food banks across the nation, and in California, we helped the California Association of Foodbanks rescue tens of thousands of pounds of fresh produce.
It doesn’t require visiting a developing country to see people suffering from malnutrition - although we’ve been to several this past year. Soylent is headquartered in Downtown Los Angeles, and we see how hunger affects our local community every day. According to Feeding America, “Los Angeles County is home to the largest estimated population of food-insecure people – nearly 1.5 million – a 14.7% food-insecurity rate.” We are committed to putting a major dent in this unacceptable statistic by working with city officials, local food banks, and committed individuals and organizations. It takes a village to tackle an issue as pervasive as food insecurity, and Soylent strives to be a responsible Los Angeles business that can help address one of the most solvable problems - hunger. Accordingly, we will work with any food bank in Los Angeles that wishes to partake in the Soylent for Good program.
With our current product portfolio, we are also working with doctors in some of the most respected hospitals in the country to help their patients eat and maintain a complete diet. We will continue to develop new, ready-to-use, nutritionally-complete products aimed to provide much needed nutrition around the globe.
No person should be worried about finding their next meal. Soylent for Good is our contribution to the fight against hunger across the globe. If you’d like to get involved, please email us at Good@soylent.com.