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Harvest Market

Unique ways to reduce grocery store food waste 


Approximately 30% of food in American grocery stores is thrown away(  Food waste has a major impact on the profitability of Harvest Market. 

Harvest Market is a local grocery store that is looking for unique ways to reduce food waste and maintain profitability with low risk to their business. Harvest Market wants to be a good corporate citizen by reducing its impact on the planet while providing products their customers want to purchase and an engaging experience. 

Harvest Market already donates food to a local food bank and discounts short-dated food. Another recommendation for Harvest Market is to review its point of sale(POS) data to stock items that its customers buy. The focus of the project was unique uses for possible food waste.


Design services that Harvest Market can implement to utilize food that would become food waste.

The Problem
The Solution


Rethink food that would become waste and create classes and experiences to utilize the food. Harvest Market partners with local chefs and creators to provide customers with new ways to use food that would otherwise become waste.

An example of one of the classes is the face mask class which uses food that would otherwise become waste to give customers a natural glow. A local creator teaches the class using the products from Harvest Market.  The customers learn by doing and then take home their creations and the recipes so they can continue the glow at home. 

Service Blueprint of Face Mask Class

Service Blueprint of face mask class for Harvest Market


Service Designer which included research, ideation, paper and digital wireframing, low and high-fidelity prototyping, conducting usability tests, accounting for accessibility, and iterating on designs.



80% of respondents are concerned with food waste.

40% of respondents are interested in activities and classes at their local grocery store to reduce food waste.

55% listed cooking as a lifestyle interest.

The research focused on users' views of food waste and partnering with a grocery store to reduce food waste.  A remote web survey was conducted with 20 participants ages ranging from 18 to 55 years of age.


from survey respondents that guided design

"Not everything can be eaten, but everything can be appropriately used."

"... bread was thrown away because it had reached its use by date but there was no room in the freezer for it."

“I grew up with not so much money so it is mostly a force of a habit rather than a concern for the environment


Persona of Monique a user of Harvest Market


Ideation focused on extending the life of the food and alternative uses for food.

The quote from a survey respondent “Not everything can be eaten, but everything can be appropriately used."

Triggered the questions;

  • "What is an appropriate use?"

  • Is this everyone’s chance to play with their food and not feel bad about it?

  • Expiration dates do not matter for food that is “not for human consumption”.

 Ideation of Food Waste solution

Ideation Affinity Diagram

The affinity diagram was assembled from a brainwriting session and a "crazy eights" sketch to ideate possible alternative uses or ways to prevent food from becoming waste.



The mobile app was designed first for a user who is motivated by sustainable solutions. Paper and digital wireframes were created. 

Two rounds of low-fidelity usability tests were conducted since the first round had a 100% failure rate.

Usability tests were performed as a combination of moderated and unmoderated using a due to the limited availability of testers.

The desktop website was designed for a different user who can benefit from the food waste solutions but sustainability is not a key motivator as mentioned by survey respondents.

Findings from low fidelity usability study

The initial design used an icon on the toolbar to access all the food waste solutions with no context or onboarding.

100% of participants could not start the task. 

The usability test was canceled early.

Harvest Market Wireframe showing the leaf icon that confused the initial usability tests
Wireframe showing the buttons added (Classes and Food Waste Solutions) to make the app useable

Buttons were added to the homepage to aid navigation.

The icon was moved to the menu.

100% of the participants in the second usability test could complete the tasks.


Wireframe Flow (mobile)

Style Guide

Harvest Market is a small regional grocery store in a saturated market.


Blue was chosen to separate Harvest Market from the competition since the majority of the competitors use green for their brand color.  

Style Guide for harvest market
High Fidelity
Style Guide

Findings from high-fidelity usability study

The back button was enlarged and a rectangle with no fill was placed behind it to make the back button easier to click.

20% of participants had trouble clicking the back button.

High Fidelity showing the improved back button
App in Action

Mobile in action

Website in Action

Web in action

Key Take Aways


The importance of Jakob’s Law - When introducing a new use for an icon, it needs an introduction or a design that starts the mental model for the user to build a bridge to the icon design at a later release.  Laws of UX

The new app features and services would be announced in-store and on the website prior to release.

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