Better Your Day with Better Bowl and the Newman's Own Foundation Challenge | Net Impact

Better Your Day with Better Bowl and the Newman's Own Foundation Challenge

Locally sourced, seasonal, organic creation by Better Bowl
Locally sourced, seasonal, organic creation by Better Bowl

UC Berkeley students Rebecca Moll, Leo Sakaguchi and Marie Ohnesorge are hoping to solve a number of earth-sized problems, one smoothie at a time. Through their startup Better Bowl, the young entrepreneurs will take produce that’s otherwise headed to the garbage bin and they’ll upcycle it, if you will, ending up with delicious-but-nutritious creations, such as the PB&J Smoothie Bowl: a blended base of blueberries, bananas and spinach, topped with hemp seeds, granola, honey and more fresh fruit.

The mission accomplished is threefold: reducing food waste; educating the public on proper nutrition (especially college students on a budget) and making proper nutrition accessible to a wider income level (again: college students on a budget). And the smartest part about their business plan? They’ll be paying half price for their ingredients, meaning they’ll be making money in no time (hurray for college students on a budget!). 

We caught up with founder Moll recently to ask her a few questions about the ideas behind Better Bowl, as well as how the project has changed for the group since they were chosen to participate in the Newman’s Own Foundation Challenge.

1. What inspired this idea? I distinctly remember a close friend of mine sharing a statistic from a Food Policy class she was taking at Berkeley that over 40 percent of all produce in the United States goes uneaten. This number really stuck in my head and inspired me to make a change.

2. What’s been the best thing? Connecting with faculty, peers and industry leaders to discuss my idea.

3. How on earth are you managing to do this and still be a student? I really see truth in the saying, "if you're passionate about what you do, you'll never work a day in your life." I'm thankful to have a supportive team, amazing mentors and advisors guiding me in this venture.

4. How has the Newman’s Own Foundation Challenge made a difference? The Newman's Own Foundation Challenge has been a great catalyst for our idea. When we found out we were one of the 20 teams selected to receive funding and mentorship gave us the confidence to further pursue our idea.

5. Have you ever done anything like this before? The Better Bowl is my first venture, but I've been involved with numerous food start-ups and sustainability and environmentally focused organizations constantly throughout my time at Berkeley.

If you're interested in learning more about Better Bowl or would like to get involved, e-mail Rebecca.

This is part of an ongoing Q&A series between Net Impact and the teams participating in the Newman’s Own Foundation Challenge. Learn about another team, FoodInno here. Continue checking the blog to see what else is happening behind the scenes with these ambitious food innovators.