Mar 15, 2019
Taylor "The Creator" Gibb and Omari Matthew put on their aprons and chef hats to get in the zone for this week's topic: The Future of Food. Listen in on trends around the benefits and downfalls of leveraging a third party delivery service, the laboratory-made IMPOSSIBLE burger, and robocar advertising... that's right.. Robocar!
PJ Bruno: Hey again, this is PJ Bruno welcome back to Braze for Impact, your weekly tech industry discuss digest, and I'm so thrilled today to have two very close friends of mine, and that is Taylor Gibb, Taylor the creator, lovely to see you here.
Taylor Gibb: Thank you so much, gosh I am flattered, and Taylor the creator, in almost rhyme that I never stumbled across before, so super flattered there.
PJ Bruno: Absolutely, and also to my right, your left, Omari Matthew, wearing this amazing apron today.
Omari M.: Yo, what's up you all, how you all doing?
PJ Bruno: Dude you're so fashion forward I don't even know what to do about it, so I'm like...
Omari M.: Yo dude, it's just, I don't know, I wake up with it sometimes, I'm just like, I've got to wear the apron.
Taylor Gibb: For all you listeners at home, nobody does an outfit of the day selfie quite like Omari, in the office bathroom too, just one point.
Omari M.: I have started trying to count, and at 50 of I try to take a mirror selfie in every bathroom I go into.
PJ Bruno: Dude, I mean, I got to say, I feel like anytime someone says, "Yo Omari, nice shirt," you're immediately down on one knee, just kind of posing it, it's like a reflex, you're just down, you're like yep, fashion.
Taylor Gibb: Make it fashion, I love it, I would buy a coffee table book of all of your mirror selfies, I think that you've got a market there.
PJ Bruno: I want that. Taylor, what are we talking about today? What is this?
Taylor Gibb: Guys, I'm so glad that you asked PJ, this week I thought it would be really cool to talk about something super near and dear to my heart, which is food. There have been some really interesting articles out in the news recently just about the future of food. I got a couple of different themes going here, we got what's food going to look like? Is it going to be substantially different from what we see it like today? We've got how are you going to get your food, right? I really very heavily on my Seamless, my Caviar, my Postmates, what's that doing to the industry? Then also just thinking a little bit beyond that, the ways that we get our food are becoming more and more pervasive, more advertising heavy, and when we think about some of these new campaigns running out there in the world, ways for different restaurants to get you to the door, maybe even taking the wheel, a little spoiler there.
Omari M.: The future of food.
PJ Bruno: I feel like it belongs in a World Fair, in like-
Omari M.: Yeah.
Taylor Gibb: Step right up-
Omari M.: Just top hat guy.
PJ Bruno: Exactly.
Taylor Gibb: It's all on a comb.
PJ Bruno: Why don't you come on down and see what world will be like in 2020. Awesome, what's this first one?
Taylor Gibb: That was great, yeah so, first things first, let's talk a little bit about this article, consumers love food delivery, restaurants and grocers hate it. So this article is talking a little bit about how as consumers rely more and more heavily on this on demand food industry, whether it's getting groceries from Jet.com, whether it's getting your pad Thai from the little place around the corner but having someone else bring it to you, which I do. Our habits of consumption are shifting drastically, and I think it's tough for the industry to keep up, so I'm just curious, maybe start with Omari about some of your thoughts about, first of all this article, and about this trend in general?
Omari M.: Yeah, yo, so the article was immediately drawing to me because I think the first thing that I was pulled out, was that orders are not profitable for the restaurant, and working with these businesses like Postmates, like Grubhub, is not on the long term profitable, but it keeps them there, it keeps them relevant.
PJ Bruno: Right.
Omari M.: That is super interesting to me because restaurants can't not use something like Grubhub, Postmates for their future, but they have to deal with it unfortunately.
PJ Bruno: They have to loss money in the near term to keep up with competition, right?
Omari M.: Exactly.
Taylor Gibb: Totally, it's everybody's doing it, all the girls in school have the same bag, and maybe you don't even like that bag but you have to have it or else nobody's going to ask you to the prom. I think that's what happened to me, it's just about a bag, right?
PJ Bruno: They just want to go to the prom, these guys here.
Taylor Gibb: Everybody here, that's right, and you know who can take them to the prom? Is these third party delivery services that a lot of these restaurants rely on. So you could be the mom-and-pop shop around the corner making meatballs, get really big online, but you don't have the infrastructure in place to have somebody out and making deliveries day in day out, and so a lot of these places rely on these third parties that will take a little bit off the top. Problem is, if your third party isn't reliable, if your delivery guy gets lost on the way, maybe something spills, everybody is going to blame the restaurant, not necessarily the delivery service, which is another big problem I didn't even consider when I was looking into this.
PJ Bruno: Yeah, I didn't even think about that.
Taylor Gibb: Definitely.
PJ Bruno: Way less control.
Taylor Gibb: Then even building the infrastructure to get all of the food, keeping it cold, keeping it ready to go at the door, did you guys see everything about that?
Omari M.: Yeah, and I think when I read that I think immediately to one of my favorite restaurants, Xi'an Famous Foods.
Taylor Gibb: Oh, love.
Omari M.: Oh, if you've never had hand pulled noodles, it is amazing.
PJ Bruno: That's the truth dude.
Omari M.: But one of the things, and they have it all over the restaurant and if you know, you go to Xi'an Famous Foods, is you want to eat it within 15 minutes, because at that point the oil begins separating. So you're losing a lot of the experience when you're ordering and trying to order from certain restaurants, and you're losing what might be the optimal form that this food experience could've been.
Taylor Gibb: Oh totally, and it's interesting to because we're aware of this, we know that foods often times best in the restaurant, but I saw this crazy statistic in the article, nearly 1/3rd of restaurants meals in the year ending in September were consumed at home, up from 2% in the previous year. So this is a massive jump, we all just got a lot lazier, things are getting a lot easier, and we all did it at the same time. So we're aware of this, we love the experience of going into a restaurant, but it seems like the trend is moving.
PJ Bruno: Is that everywhere, or is that just New York City?
Taylor Gibb: I think this one was in, I'd have to get back to you, it looks like just New York City, in this article here, which-
PJ Bruno: Okay, okay, that makes sense.
Taylor Gibb: We're super on demand here, if I can have my remote taken to me from a bike courier from across the room in a couple of years, I want it.
PJ Bruno: I need that third party, that is just too far for me, and it's Saturday, I need to be waited on.
Taylor Gibb: Well PJ, tell me though, as a consumer, are you a big fan of these on demand services, are you a Postmates man?
PJ Bruno: Oh I'm a Seamless man through and through, honestly when I'm on the west coast, I go Postmates just because I think that's the way forward, yeah, I'm a big believer in having my food delivered to me and paying way too much for it, and I'm going to pay for that in the long run, and I understand that.
Taylor Gibb: Oh totally.
PJ Bruno: But man have I ever bought into the convenience of it.
Omari M.: Wait, why do you pay more? I'm super interested because it's, you know it's cheaper in the restaurant.
PJ Bruno: Right, okay, so I know it's cheaper in the restaurant, but I got home from a long day at work, and I don't know if you know this about me but I don't eat breakfast, so I haven't eaten breakfast, I eat lunch, but I only have a small window for lunch, and you know downstairs it's one portion and then get out of my face, and if I don't have enough time to go down around 2:00 pm to get my second lunch well then I'm pretty hungry. So the portion that I get-
Taylor Gibb: Maybe they've never heard of second lunch Sam?
Omari M.: Second lunch.
PJ Bruno: 11:00 eez? Afternoon tea? For all you [Louder] fans out there.
Taylor Gibb: Oh [inaudible].
PJ Bruno: But yeah, no, I actually I consume ridiculous embarrassing large dinners sometimes, and I'm talking like a medium pepperoni pizza with a side of waffle fries, and two Pepsi's, that's embarrassing, but, so take that and then put the charge on top of it, honestly guys, sometimes I'm paying like $30 to $35 for a meal, it's terrible, it's disgusting, but once I've gotten home, and I sit on that couch, and I'm in that chill mode, it's you know what? I'm the king of the castle, I have some money to throw around, I could spend it on a trip to Bali, I could spend it on experiences or my friends, but you know what, my gullet is craving something special right now.
Taylor Gibb: You know what your gullet might be craving too, in 10 years or so? Here's a segue for you, it could be an impossible burger, maybe you're going to be craving, you're going to say, I want that Pepperoni... Pepper...
PJ Bruno: You got it, sound it out.
Taylor Gibb: Cut that out because I want a pepperoni pizza, but I want that pepperoni to be FO pepperoni, maybe a little peppofoni pizza.
PJ Bruno: Ooh, you got it patent pending.
Taylor Gibb: Yeah, TM, everyone listening in.
PJ Bruno: Taylor the creator, on her stuff.
Taylor Gibb: That's right. We've got another article here that I picked out because I think it's super fascinating, we were talking earlier today about the impossible burger, which for those of you at home that might not be aware, is this I think a vegan burger, so all plant based, but it grills like meat, it sears like meat, it bleeds like meat, a little creepy, but I'm kinda in to it. A lot of people are saying that this is the way forward, not only for making a more cruelty free experience for eating, but for the good of the planet, because this doesn't mean that we're going to be taking up a ton of livestock, which produces CO2, our farming practices will be different. So first of all, I'm just really curious as to if either of you guys have tried any of these meats of the future?
PJ Bruno: What about you Omari?
Omari M.: Yeah, I buy it monthly.
PJ Bruno: What?
Omari M.: I buy the Beyond Meat, because there's a Whole Foods really close to me.
PJ Bruno: Oh cool.
Omari M.: So I hop in there and I get the beyond meat burger.
PJ Bruno: And this is lab made meat that we're talking about.
Omari M.: Yeah, we're talking lab, scientific coats.
PJ Bruno: Not learning at Braze type stuff, this is actually-
Taylor Gibb: Shameless plug. In a laboratory.
Omari M.: Yeah dog, it's so good, it's really, really good. I was blown away the first time I had it because you pull it out, you take it out the box, and it very much feels like a hamburger patty, it looks like a hamburger patty, you slap it on the pan, you hear that sear that you always look for in a good burger.
PJ Bruno: And it stays together? Because I feel like the concern when you come to veggie based patties, it crumbles, or it falls apart a little too easily, because it doesn't have the [sinues], right? Doesn't have the meat, but does that?
Omari M.: Yeah, it holds together like a charm, and I've had my roommate eat a burger, and he was, "Honestly if you didn't tell me this was a Beyond Meat burger I would've thought it was a regular burger."
Taylor Gibb: That is crazy, and they were in the article talking about the ways that they make this fake meat, and it's, they have a vat of what's called, we said, heme is how you pronounce it?
PJ Bruno: Heme.
Taylor Gibb: Why don't we have fake blood, just a big ole vat of fake blood, like an Edward Tolman-
PJ Bruno: Is it that metallic?
Taylor Gibb: Yeah, exactly, exactly, and it's interesting too though because we were saying a lot of the reason that people are so reluctant to change the way that they are eating is because it's kind of cultural entrenched. I want to have my burger, and I want it to be the kind of burger that I want. But PJ you made a really good point earlier that this is effecting more than us.
PJ Bruno: Yeah, it just is, I think especially America we're very much like, I have my freedoms, and I want to be able to have what I want, and I'm entitled to have a burger. But to me as soon as we're in a situation where animal agriculture is creating a bunch of CO2 and Methane, in whatever 10 or 20 years the environment is looking not so good. As soon as you're in a situation where your free will is affecting the future health of not just people on this planet, but future generations, that is when it's time to say, okay, maybe we need to rethink this for the good of all.
Taylor Gibb: Totally.
Omari M.: Word.
Taylor Gibb: Yeah, I mean is your McDonald's burger really worth it? Who knows? I mean maybe in the moment at 3:00 am, you're like, screw future generations.
PJ Bruno: Right, exactly, and you know that said, me being on my soapbox here, I eat meat, so it's not like, but it just is more like if we had this call to arms, kind of like everyone it's time, let's do it, I'd be the first one on there. But I mean as long as they're going to still have meat available, I'm probably going to eat that.
Taylor Gibb: Ah, I love it.
Omari M.: Dude, that's okay.
Taylor Gibb: You know what? Omari's going to have [crosstalk]-
PJ Bruno: It's impossible though dude, you-
Omari M.: Yo, dog, you all are more than welcome, come through, I'll cook you all some impossible patties.
Taylor Gibb: Let's have a cook out.
PJ Bruno: You do that Sunday-
Taylor Gibb: Let's have some Tofurky.
PJ Bruno: Sunday dinner.
Omari M.: Yeah dog.
Taylor Gibb: Oh, amazing, we're getting to grilling season too here, Omari bring your apron, we're going to set up a meat free cook out.
Omari M.: I'm with it.
PJ Bruno: Oh actually, don't forget, also insect protein will become very big in our future.
Omari M.: Ooh.
Taylor Gibb: Ooh.
PJ Bruno: I know, I know, Ooh, there's oohs like ooh, and then there's oohs like ew ooh, but you should know-
Taylor Gibb: I can see it.
Omari M.: Insects man.
Taylor Gibb: Oh my god. Oh, I'm getting on a tangent but I've got to ask you guys, this is one of my favorite ice breakers. If you were given an unlimited budget and your only task was to make insects delicious, like the food of the future, what would you do? Because I'm always like nacho cheese powder, or like-
Omari M.: Yeah, ground them up.
Taylor Gibb: Grind them up.
PJ Bruno: For me I just think salsa's, I bury things in ketchup because I like ketchup, sriracha would make that a next level.
Omari M.: I think that there are whole, either Mexican or South American cultures where insect protein was the only source of protein during their time, during that civilizations time. So they've invented amazing ways to incorporate it, and it's persist because food is history, food is culture. So it's persisted over time and you see, I think there's a really great Chef's Table on it. On this guy who creates, I don't know exactly the dish he makes, but he sticks to using insects for it, because it's a culturally relevant dish, and it's so ingrained in who he is and where he's from.
PJ Bruno: See that's the thing, it's like at the end of the day insect proteins, they're not going negatively affect the environment like animal agriculture does, but if you flip the script and you went to that guy, and were listen, insect proteins is messing stuff up, we need you to stop doing that, he's like no, that's part of who I am.
Omari M.: Yeah.
Taylor Gibb: So true.
PJ Bruno: So it's culturally entrenched is the way to put it I guess.
Taylor Gibb: Although I wonder how culturally entrenched all these things are, here's another segue for you. Talking a little bit about the power of culture, about I'm going to have my McDonald's burger whenever I want it, wherever I want it, and then a little bit of a swerve coming in from our buddies down at Burger King. So for those of you who haven't heard, this is a Burger King one cent Whopper detour, essentially this is a campaign that Burger King ran where if you ordered a Whopper within, I forget it was something like 300 feet of a McDonald's essentially right there, through their app, you would get it for one cent.
PJ Bruno: That's right.
Taylor Gibb: So that's I think brilliant marketing number one, but two opens the door to some really interesting different ideas for marketing, perhaps incredibly pervasive, and that's what this article is about. So we're talking in the future, you're sitting here, beep, bop, in my little robot car, and I'm like, "Robot car take me to Subway sandwiches," and it's, "All right Taylor," my robot car is very friendly about it, it's like, "But Taylor, but I need to tell you that Quiznos," which it's still around in the future, I'm not sure if it's around right now honestly, "Quiznos-
PJ Bruno: It came back in the future.
Taylor Gibb: If Quiznos has made a return and for now only you get one dollar Quiznos sandwich, "Taylor I can take you right there, right now, as your robot car." And I'm of course going to say, "Robot car take me to Quiznos, thank you." So all of that aside, let's think about marketing in the future. We've got self driving cars, we've got the idea of perhaps more Uber and Lyft where your Lyft driver could say, "There's a deal going on at CVS where we can get you some, it looks like you're feeling really sick after this night of drinking, do you need some Advil? I'll take you there, I have an ad."
PJ Bruno: Exactly.
Taylor Gibb: Tell me a little bit about what you think about this kind of advertising of the future, doesn't necessarily have to food, but lets kind of talk about that.
PJ Bruno: Yeah, it's interesting because they did mention in the article, it's funny because it starts with the whole trolling Whooper detour thing, but then it goes into like, imagine the future, you get a hankering for fast food, and your robo car pulls up, stuff like that, and basically goes through the whole scenario, but in the future where your car is a robot, and your car has screens all on the inside that advertises to you constantly. So first of all, on one side of the coin really interested in a dystopia future where I have advertising screens in my robo car feeding me images all the time, that's a little creepy.
Omari M.: It's a Black Mirror episode.
PJ Bruno: It is a Black Mirror-
Taylor Gibb: I mean I always hit mute on those Taxi screens.
PJ Bruno: Oh, every time, I turn it off, I don't even mute it.
Omari M.: I just get out. This is not worth it.
Taylor Gibb: See you.
PJ Bruno: I rip the screen down, throw it out the window. But no, and then they go to talking about in the future they can have these eye tracking cameras and biometric sensors where it's paying attention to your body and what you want. So if you're tired it's like, "Oh, there's a Starbucks close by. Or you're feeling anxious because of your rapid eye movement, go get a massage, there's one down the street." So it's kind of this thing of I don't want to be sold stuff all the time, but if it's based on how I feel, and if it's picking up those, it's that personalization touch. So it kind, I can argue both sides of it.
Omari M.: Dude, I never feel like people, I'm more like, I'll never feel like people get this right, because I'm a strong believer that once a marketing department, no offense to any marketing department, once a marketing department gets a hold of something, and they do it well, every other marketing department well we've got to do the same thing, and it goes way too far, and then all of a sudden consumers are now, everyone's doing this, this is incredibly invasive, it's who I am, and what I am, and where I am.
Taylor Gibb: Totally.
PJ Bruno: That's what they do, they push the envelope until they find where they've crossed that line.
Omari M.: Exactly.
PJ Bruno: Then they try to like... Reel it in, reel it in.
Taylor Gibb: Sorry.
Omari M.: And it's so hard to reel it in, yeah.
Taylor Gibb: Apologetic tweets, and I got to tell you guys listening here on the line, Omari used to be part of our marketing department here at Braze.
Omari M.: I love marketing.
Taylor Gibb: He's since moved on to support, but I'm actually curious as your kind of marketers take here, talking about the strategy behind something like this. How can a brand maybe ride on the coattails of something let's say way in the future you've got this robo car, ride on these coattails but make it an experience that consumers are going to love, that they're going to want more of? What's the key to finding that line, finding that good balance? Tough question.
Omari M.: That's a touch question, I feel like a lot of is just taking yourself out of one your shoes as a marketer, and then two the entire business, because I feel like it's really easy to step on toes when you're not cognizant of the toes you're stepping on.
Taylor Gibb: Well put, well put.
Omari M.: So you're able to, you're going to push out ideas and push forward marketing campaigns that can really get invasive for a lot of consumers. I mean there was a large point in time when I don't think anyone could really get post messages, right? Until we found the sweet spot.
Taylor Gibb: The dark ages.
Omari M.: Yeah, the dark ages, and now post messages are expected, and now consumers are able to turn off their post notifications, finally.
Taylor Gibb: Sure.
Omari M.: Where back in the day everyone was automatically opted in, and now they figured out look, maybe everybody doesn't want to be automatically updated, we should give them a choice. I think as long as marketers are aware that they are invading another person, or coming into another person's space with advertisements that might not be relevant to them at the time, as long as you're aware of that, your campaigns should naturally become something that's valuable to the consumer.
Taylor Gibb: Nice.
PJ Bruno: Well you know what's an interesting thought though is in the future, in your robo car, you're getting all these advertisements, and let's say all of them are hyper personalized, so there's not a single one that's not relevant, so it's every single, even if you don't want it, it's oh you realize that this is based on information about you, so it's relevant even if you don't want a massage at this moment, you realize that you're tired and it's picking up that you're tired. So every advertisement is personalized and relevant, and so then I think it becomes a matter of just exhaustion from people advertising to you. So to me, I think maybe the next tactic would be changing the format, or changing the medium, because you're in your robo car, there are seven screens all around your robo car, and you know you're going to get advertised to for the duration of the trip. So how do you change that and make it feel a little more like someone wants to take care of you, or someone wants to do something that you're interested in versus someone wants to make money off of you. It might be moving away from screens, because if you look at a TV in a car, you know you're being advertised too, and in the future in the robo car, that is almost synonymous, seeing a screen will just feel like marketing, it will feel like advertising, so in the future I hope, come on future, I'm rooting for you, we need to kind of surpass the screen, and do something that feels a little more... It's funny, what was it? It was, it might have been Black Mirror, but it was basically in the future the idea that your ad buddy, it's basically instead of receiving an advertisement, it's all right, I'll use ad... Oh, you know what it was? So basically, sorry, I'll explain, the ad buddy is basically it's a person, an actual person that sits next to you, and you're like, "Oh, I don't have enough money in my account to pay for my Metro card," like, "That's okay, do you want to use an ad buddy for the next seven hours and then that will pay for your Metro card?" It's like, "All right, fine." Boo, ad buddy, and then you just have this human that's next to you, a real human whose paid to just kind of read advertisements to you for the next seven hours.
Omari M.: [inaudible] think of that.
PJ Bruno: Yeah, it's more human, and it's a step backward, but it's-
Taylor Gibb: It's off the charts on the humanity effects.
Omari M.: Yeah right.
PJ Bruno: Yeah, but this is a real person.
Taylor Gibb: We are an actual human.
PJ Bruno: Exactly, anyways, it was that show on Netflix with Emma Stone, and-
Taylor Gibb: Oh, Jonah Hill.
PJ Bruno: Jonah Hill, yes.
Taylor Gibb: Oh, I don't remember what it's called.
PJ Bruno: That's what it was.
Taylor Gibb: But that is hilarious.
Omari M.: Oh, oh my god it's on the top of my head.
PJ Bruno: It's true, we're surrounded by computers and we're not going to look it up, we're going to, that's the question of the day, if you guys get back to us with the answer to that show, you win some sick swag.
Taylor Gibb: Oh that's right.
Omari M.: Yeah.
Taylor Gibb: Swiggity swag.
Omari M.: And a high five.
Taylor Gibb: Yeah, even more I think valuable for Omari's...
PJ Bruno: Any final thoughts about, I just love thinking about the future, I'm sorry, Back to the Future is my favorite movie of all time, so just considering.
Taylor Gibb: Oh boy, that Mary McFly.
PJ Bruno: The funniest thing about when you think about that stuff, people are like, oh in the future, flying cars, that was the biggest thing they could think of, it's dude, it's called a plane, it exists already, think of something better.
Taylor Gibb: Do better.
PJ Bruno: Do better.
Taylor Gibb: I just love the Tomorrowland kind of version of the future too, it's like oh, and then everybody takes a pill instead of eating, and there's-
PJ Bruno: Oh, that's what, see I forgot to get to that, the future of food, is it in pill form? Do we get it injected? Is there a chip that you have inside of your neck that releases proteins and...
Taylor Gibb: I think we should have photosynthesis tattoos that take in the sunshine-
Omari M.: Oh that would be tight.
PJ Bruno: Whoa.
Taylor Gibb: So need a little morning coffee or something, no way, go outside get your tattoo in the sunshine and it's bo do dup, and feeling it for the day, that's my idea for the future. Patent pending, we've got peppafony, and we got photosynthesis tattoos, anybody who wants to approach me with a deal, you on, I know you're listening, please just reach right out, all right?
PJ Bruno: Awesome.
Taylor Gibb: Well, Omari, did you have a final thought about the future of food, I saw it?
Omari M.: Oh, no.
Taylor Gibb: Oh, no, just wearing that apron, looking super fly. PJ, thank you so much for having us on the podcast today, I think it was a great time talking about tasty things and tomorrow.
PJ Bruno: And what they could taste like tomorrow.
Omari M.: Heck yeah.
Taylor Gibb: That's right.
PJ Bruno: And thank you guys for being here with us, this is PJ Bruno.
Taylor Gibb: Taylor Gibb.
Omari M.: Omari Matthew.
PJ Bruno: You guys come back now, you hear? Take care.