NEW YORK, Dec. 12, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- With a pig butchering demo by Tom Mylan on the menu, it was clear to everyone that Hack//Meat would not be your average hackathon. For 48 hours from December 7-9, more than 150 "steakholders," technologists, entrepreneurs and creatives from across the country convened at Hack//Meat 2012, the first-ever meat hackathon, to tackle some of the greatest challenges facing sustainable meat. Thousands more contributed online at #hackmeat. Participants self-organized into teams to rapidly prototype solutions to challenges like improving communication along the meat supply chain, the impact of consolidation on rural communities and labeling confusion for consumers.
Twelve teams pitched their final prototypes to an expert panel of judges including Tom Mylan (The Meat Hook), Stephen McDonnell (Applegate), Paul Matteucci (US Venture Partners), Shai Goldman (500 Startups), Hillary Mason (Bitly), and Christian Pappanicholas (Cannibal/Resto). Winners were awarded $2,500 and marketing services from Purpose and JWT to continue working with "steakholders" to bring their products to fruition.
The winning projects featured:
- CARV – 1st place - an internet-enabled scale and label printer that captures critical data about individual cuts of meat, saves it in a digital format and provides automated reports to anyone in the value chain. CARV doesn't change processors' workflow, it is not technically demanding to operate, and it provides value for processors by reducing the time they need to spend reporting to the USDA and FSIS.
- Slot for Slaught- 2nd place - a web platform to assist meat processors in streamlining their communication with suppliers, that can be used independently or in conjunction with CARV. Additionally, the tool enables processors to improve scheduling and evenly distribute workflow throughout the year. Both CARV and Slot for Slaught tackled challenges posed by the Vermont Meat Processing Group.
- Meat- 3rd Place – a Foursquare app that tackled the issue of matching consumer demand with grocery store supply – a challenge posed by Applegate – by helping consumers request particular products at their nearby grocer.
Other projects included:
- HashMeat: An interactive infographic with social and advocacy integration to help visualize the impact of farm consolidation and help grassroots organizers like Food & Water Watch communicate complex Food Monopoly issues
- Meat or Cheat: A web platform that allows users to "vote" products into local grocery and provides a platform for reframing the discussion around sustainable meat
- Farm Stamp: A mechanism for increasing transparency and traceability in the meat system
- PleaseStock: A device connecting shoppers with brands and stores to match consumer demand with grocer supply
- OpenSKU: A mobile app that captures GS1 barcodes and returns data from a crowd sourced database, allows consumers to track purchases and obtain information
- Meatocracy: A consumer tool for better understanding food labeling and simplifying purchasing decisions, a challenge from Consumer Reports and Animal Welfare Approved
- Meat Monolith: An interactive communication tool to educate college-age consumers on the issues surrounding factory farming through the work of Sustainable Table and The Meatrix
- BETTER MEAT: A community "meating" place (on Facebook) for home cooks to share experiences and recipes while challenging themselves and friends to eat meat more sustainably
- WeShop: A social grocery list app that equally benefits Customers, Brands, and Grocery Stores
- Challenge descriptions and project details http://hackmeat.wikispaces.com/Demos
"I was incredibly impressed with the caliber of work that came out of just 48 hours of collaboration. I can only imagine the impact these projects will have when continued to completion and I look forward to seeing their introduction into the market," said Stephen McDonnell, CEO of Applegate.
Event co-host Destin Layne, Program Director at GRACE Communications Foundation adds, "Participants tackled some of the real world challenges sustainable livestock farmers face in their efforts to stay competitive with the factory farm monopolies that damage the environment, animal welfare and public health. In just a weekend, they created real tools that advocates and organizers can use to educate people about the choices they have, as we work to transform our broken food system into one that is better for all of us."
"Hack//Meat was our first step to developing a model for game-changing food system innovation. It was exciting to see so many projects developed that can already make a real impact. Perhaps even more exciting, is seeing participants hunger to continue development of their projects. I look forward to working with CARV, the other teams, and future hackathon participants to continue disrupting the status quo," says Danielle Gould, event organizer and Founder of Food+Tech Connect.
For video footage of the project presentations or media inquires please contact Rachel Finan firstname.lastname@example.org, 202.339.9598. For more information visit Hack//Meat, Twitter(hashtag #hackmeat), or Facebook. To view photos visit Hack//Meat.
SOURCE Food+Tech Connect