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Improve Health and Food Consumption

Take-out food is either unhealthy or expensive. We want to offer a solution that makes people independent from those alternatives- Heatbox.

Photo of Amit Jaura
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As our society is getting busier and time is becoming scarcer by the day, our diets often suffer as a consequence. When it comes to eating warm and healthy food outside of home, we generally run into 3 problems: 1. The absence of microwaves when needing them the most 2. Unhealthy alternatives and takeout food while being on the go 3. Expensive 

 healthy alternatives when consuming on a daily basis. These (Dutch and International oriented) problems motivated us to come up with a solution: Heatbox.

Heatbox: The Self-Heating Lunchbox is a new and innovative device that enables its user to enjoy a warm and healthy meal regardless of his/her location or time. Heatbox steams food, which is not only healthier than microwaved food, but also tastes much better. With a single press on the button or app, you can enjoy a warm meal within 8 minutes, anywhere, anytime.

Heatbox uses autonomous heating, meaning it is rechargeable and can be used up to 3 times on a single charge. It is app-connected and controllable, allowing users to follow and track meals, but also connect with the Heatbox to control settings and steaming programs. Heatbox is leakproof and easy to carry along due to its shape and materials. An important element of Heatbox is sustainability, as we highly promote the carrying-along of leftover food rather than throwing it away and want to reduce plastic waste (sporks, plastic bags)!

How will your solution benefit residents, workers, or visitors in the Michigan Central Station impact area? (1,000 characters)

Our main target group consists of commuters and urbanists. People that live in the city and dense areas, often not having direct access (affordable!) healthy food while being on the go. With our product, Heatbox: The Self-Heating Lunchbox, we enable people to become independent of external factors when it comes to food consumption. Be it the struggle to find a microwave or unhealthy / expensive take-out food, Heatbox allows you to enjoy a warm prepared meal regardless of the time or place.

Describe your solution's stage of development

  • Prototype - you have built a prototype and tested it with potential users

Insights from previous testing (500 characters)

We have done many food tests over the past year while building our prototype. We have gained lots of attention and interested buyers over the past few months (events, online and corporations). We have done user tests internally only and are aiming to launch our product through Kickstarter (rather large pilot). A relatively smaller pre-test would, however, make more sense. But then a matter of resources stands in our way (too small batch size / MOQ).

Tell us about your team or organization (500 characters)

Our team consists of 4 co-founders. Having two business oriented (Amit and Kevin) and two technical members (Dennis and Michael), we have a lot of synergy. we do have one thing in common: a passion for good food :). Amit - CEO - Kevin - COO - Dennis - CPO - Michael - CTO -

Size of your team or organization

  • 2-10

Team or Organization URL

Are you submitting as a student team?

  • No

Are you submitting as a team from the Impact Area?

  • Yes

Funding Request

  • $100,000

Rough Budget (500 characters)

Rough division: $50K: batch production + logistics $10K travel + accommodation. $25K R&D $15K promotion

Describe how you would pilot your idea (1000 characters)

We would start by signing up interest individuals that would be interested in using Heatbox for an x period of time. These individuals would be selected based on our buyer personas and assumptions; best fit with our product. These individuals would be given a Heatbox (funding needed primarily for this) and asked whether they could try to implement it in their daily routine. We would measure their response, whether they needed to severely change habits (and which ones) and how it affected their well-being in general.

Describe how you would measure the success of your pilot (1000 characters)

We would consider the pilot to be successful if we see patterns in the users' eating behaviour and well-being once introduced to Heatbox. Our goal is to find out how much value and till what extent Heatbox relieves pains for the people in the urban area of Michigan Central Station. We would use it as a projection for other areas. Whether negative or positive towards Heatbox, any pattern would mean succes to us.

Sustainability Plan (500 characters)

We would continue with our primary plan, a launch on Kickstarter to implement Heatbox on a larger and nationwide scale. Through the pilot results, we would have more confidence in doing so.

1 comment

Join the conversation:

Photo of Mackenzie Fankell

Amit Jaura Hello! Thank you for posting this proposal! I am a Michigan Central Station Challenge facilitator. It sounds like this product works really well for people in urban areas who have access to healthy food that they can bring with them for lunch. Many of our residents of the impact area have mentioned that access to healthy food is not easy to come by in many areas of Detroit. Grocery stores can be scarce and difficult to get to without a car. I'd love to hear your thoughts on this issue.