Big QuestionsOur work related to complex challenges.

The Challenge

Reposition Food Genius’s core offering as a service to the food industry rather than to consumers.


Food Genius Reports, a consumer and industry trend dashboard.

Fueled by a mission to “help everyone love what they eat,” the Chicago-based food-tech startup Food Genius created a consumer-facing mobile app that used a complex algorithm to track more than 16 million restaurant menu items and classify consumers’ dining-out behaviors.

After the year-old startup became part of IDEO’s Startup in Residence program in Chicago, the company changed its focus from consumers to the food industry.

To build their food industry-focused platform, the designers collaborated on a number of business and technological development strategies, product road-mapping, and a prototype viral marketing experience called Curry Crawl to test the usability of the new API.

In April 2016, Food Genius was acquired by US Foods. "What was really striking about US Foods is that they take a very analytics-driven approach to their business," said Justin Massa, founder and former CEO of Food Genius. "They bought the technology knowing it's going to be able to do great stuff."

Food and Beverage
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