Jamie Crummie (Human Rights Law LLM, 2015)
Co-Founder and Director at Too Good To Go, Jamie Crummie, is featured during Queen Mary celebration of the Global Entrepreneurship Week.
In November Queen Mary celebrated the Global Entrepreneurship Week. One of the featured alumni profiles was dedicated to Co-Founder and Director at Too Good To Go, Jamie Crummie (Human Rights Law LLM, 2015). Too Good To Go is a Social Impact company fighting global food waste by allowing people to rescue surplus food from cafes, restaurants, hotels, shops and supermarkets, to avoid perfectly good food being thrown away. In his profile, Jamie reflects on how the idea for Too Good To Go came about and the evolution of the company to date. Below is a short extract of the interview conducted by Queen Mary. The full interview can be accessed online.
Can you touch on your current role as Co-Founder and Director of Too Good To Go? What were your motivations for co-founding Too Good To Go?
My motivations in life have always been around having social impact and actually, it was during my time in Australia where I was working in the events industry alongside my studies that I was met first-hand with the pandemic of food waste. I was working on large scale events of 300+ people and we would throw plate after plate of perfectly good food away. At the time I was unsure whether this was something unique to the events organisation that I worked for, or something unique to Australia. This planted the initial seed for Too Good To Go and then after completing my undergraduate studies and before undertaking my masters, I worked with various human rights organisations and one of our events was catered for by a group of people who were repurposing food, much like the food I had been throwing away, and turning it into an amazing spread. This was a very eye opening moment for me as I had previously been unaware of the gravity and the scale of food waste and from that point on it was something that had always played on my mind. With one of my other co-founders the pieces sort of fell together and then after completing my masters, we launched Too Good to Go.
It was a very lean operation when we first started; we were bootstrapping and cutting costs at any opportunity but from the off we went all in, it was a full time career and we had the luxury of being able to support ourselves through very modest means. For example, my co-founder and I shared a bedroom in the early days!
How did your time and study at CCLS and Queen Mary help your career and development?
A lot of the skills you develop during a master’s degree stay with you - your ability to present an argument, your research, your analytical skills - these are all things that you bring forward into your professional career. At the same time, Queen Mary gave us a lot of support in terms of funding through their QIncubator programme; they gave us seed funding to really get us going and bring what was an idea and something we were incredibly passionate about, into a reality.
Is there any advice you would give to current students or recent graduates considering their career options? Or considering starting their own company.
Be a sponge, absorb everything and try to go to as many different talks and undertake as many different modules as possible, to really get a wide breadth of experience and knowledge to build and develop upon once you graduate. If you are trying to start your own business, just jump in, there is no point in hesitating, you’ve really got to have that growth mind-set and try to develop an idea from the bottom up.
What was so special about your time at CLLS and Queen Mary?
I have made some friends for life and having a good support network is incredibly important in order to keep yourself grounded and to be able to bounce ideas off of. Great memories that spring to mind would be some of the awards that we won through Queen Mary when it comes to innovation and ideas – this is something that we are incredibly proud of and it is great to see that the support we had during those early stages has been truly validated over the years. Overall, when I look at the best things I got out of Queen Mary, it was starting Too Good To Go and the level of support I received there, so whether that was through award programmes where I met the daughter of Stephen Hawking, or through funding and mentoring, there was an array of support that came through.
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