Consumers who prepare and pack their midday meal in a lunch box often have a choice. Pack a meal that is meant to be eaten cold or rely on a microwave to reheat your lunch. Startup UZME has raised funds on Indiegogo to help its business develop a lunch box capable of heating food with water.
Hungry for new funds
UZME expected to raise just under $ 5,900 for its lunch box company over the course of the crowdfunding campaign. So far, the startup business has successfully raised more than 15% of its target goal. The Indiegogo campaign still has several weeks to accumulate new funding for the company.
With the final design of its lunch box completed, the funding generated for UZME during the campaign will help the startup fund its first wave of customer orders and complete tools. Additional funding from crowdfunding investors will allow the company to build a recycling program for the heating components of its new lunch boxes and make its product more sustainable.
Early investors in the lunch box business have the opportunity to insure their own device at a discounted price. UZME expects its product to go commercial for around $ 70 after the crowdfunding campaign ends. If the fundraising effort is successful, the startup hopes to start shipping its lunch boxes to investors sometime in December.
A lunch box that brings the heat
The Portugal-based business was founded by entrepreneurs João Campos and Diogo Lopes. Both Campos and Lopes have a background in mechanical engineering and a desire to change the way they prepare their midday meals. Rather than waiting in line for a microwave at the office, UZME offers a new way to heat up your lunch.
To use the startup’s self-heated lunch box, users detach the insulated lid and remove the inner food container from the bottom half of the device. Users then place a heat pack filled with water-reactive minerals in the bottom of the lunch box and apply a small amount of water to start the reaction. Finally, the food container is placed on top of the heating pack and sealed inside the steamed lunch box for five minutes.
The startup has plans to launch a subscription service for replacement heating pads in the future. While UZME claims that its heating packs are safe to throw away, the lunch box business aims to implement an industrial drying and recycling system for its products to reduce its ecological footprint.
Preparation for the lunch box industry
To find a place in the industry, UZME will have to compete with the lunchbox designs of various competitors. Priced relatively high for its product, the startup business is placing itself in the same price range as companies like YETI, although its self-heating design sets itself apart from YETI’s own offerings. There are numerous competitors in the lower price brackets, including Carhartt and Rubbermaid. Market research expects the US lunch box market to reach $ 5.96 billion by 2024.