A new app launched in London today (15 February) allows customers to collect ‘high-quality surplus food’ from restaurants, cafes and grocery stores at half price.

Sweden-based Karma first launched in 2016 with the aim of helping reduce food waste by providing a service for customers to collect food that would otherwise be thrown away.

Its 250,000 Swedish users and 1,000 partners have assisted Karma in determining the times cafes and restaurants usually sell excess breakfast and lunch foods, as well as targeting bakeries that sell day-old bread and pastries.

The restaurants, cafes and stores involved upload their leftover food and items to the Karma app for customers to place an order and pay via the app. Collection takes places within a specified time as a take-away.

Today’s launch will allow users to collect food from 50 locations in London.

These include Michelin-starred Aquavit, nine branches of French bistro Aubaine, a new restaurant called Magpie, Yamabahçe, international vegetarian chain Tibits, Essence Cuisine, Calcutta Street, Detox Kitchen, in-store restaurant Arket and six restaurants from Mediterranean chain Hummus Bros.

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Chief operating officer and co-founder of Karma, Elsa Bernadotte said: “We are super excited to be live in London and that we already have these fantastic restaurants joining as our exclusive launching partners.

“The interest has been fantastic from day one and with Londoners being environmentally conscious, great foodies and highly digital in their food shopping, we think it’s a perfect match for a solution like Karma.”

Chef and café developer at Arket, Martin Berg said: “First established in our own hometown of Stockholm, many of us working at Arket are already daily users of the Karma app and have seen first-hand what a brilliant solution it is.

“With a shared commitment to sustainability and smart use of resources, it feels very natural to partner with Karma and to connect our vegetarian cafés to the app when it’s now launched in London.”

Founder of Aubaine, Hani Nakkach added: “We’re delighted to be partnering with Karma to tackle food waste in the restaurant industry and raise awareness of these issues. Its success is its simplicity which creates a win-win situation for everyone involved while preserving our environment.”