The Choco app touched down in Austin, Texas. During the past weeks, our team members have explored and supported the flourishing local landscape of delicious restaurants, pubs, and food trucks, and had the opportunity of finding themselves in one of the top US culinary scenes, as well as major hot spots for innovation in the food and tech industry.
Austin is the ultimate destination for up-and-coming startups and groundbreaking food companies working with hospitality and consumer packaged goods, often with a focus on sustainability. Let's have a look at what the city is all about— here is a list of locally born companies and services in Austin you should keep an eye on during 2021.
Gardenio is the 2.0 garden club helping you grow organic and sustainable herbs & greens with an app and through community support. In case your restaurant’s patio or back of house courtyard needed an extra hint of greens, this platform might be right up your alley.
The idea is it's weirdly difficult to start growing food for something we've done for 20,000 years. You can walk in and support a Home Depot or something and try to figure it out yourself, or we can do the hard work, send you what you need, and help you make the best decisions along the way. You can just focus on tending to and eating those cool varieties of sage, basil, and mint you can't find anywhere else— says Roman Gonzalez, Founder & CEO of Gardenio.
Their team provides you with all the necessary equipment (box with living plants, pots, soil, and a few smart extra tools) to grow your own food. And that’s not it: the box is customized according to your outdoor space and season. Their service is designed for all types of growers, so much so that if you are a beginner and accidentally let your plants die in the first few months of having it, they'll send you another one— how amazing? Their app helps you manage plants and connect with expert gardeners in your area for support to receive the best tips on growing food by yourself...well, not really by yourself, as their team suggests. Any chef out there willing to start a new adventure into gardening?
TabbedOut is the POS system solution designed to remove staff and guest touch-points and provide a safe and profitable guest experience through commission-free phone-to-table mobile ordering and Touchless PaymentTM. This service is thought for high-volume restaurants, bars, patios, and beer gardens. We all know how tedious it is for front of house workers to manage these kinds of operations during busy services, and this is right when TabbedOut comes into action. Thanks to their system, restaurants can display digital menus, manage table orders, access data and marketing reports, and deliver special offers to their customers' smartphones.
Vinder is the new Etsy for hyper-local food proposing a farmer-market-like digital shop experience with more than 100 local producers in Austin. With this platform, people can browse and shop all types of items like baked goods, fresh produce, meats, or pantries— anything you want to satisfy your craves and bring your menu to the next level with fresh and local products. Their single vendor checkout system allows you to know that your money is going directly to your selected purveyors. Launched on foot and bicycle by Sam Lillie, Vinder's mission is to give the food system back to the people by connecting the community to local goods.
Food & Agtech
When it comes to keeping an eye on the latest tech innovations in the local food & agtech sector, Austin Technology Incubator (ATI) is the program to follow. ATI is a deep tech incubator that has a vertical that focuses on Food & Agtech, in which a variety of companies working towards the future of the industry gain access to expertise, resources, and opportunities to mature and scale their ventures.
Whether they provide solutions for restaurants or strive to bring the best products to the community, these companies in Austin are real game-changers within the local food industry. Their mission inspires our team here to join the community and add some Choco love to the Texas capital.