Innovation Blog

ECIU funding for Innovative projects: The FreshApp case

The FreshApp team won a Transnational Innovation Voucher, assigned by the European Consortium of Innovative Universities (ECIU) to the best project of Innovation. This is their experience.

FreshApp: Real challenges for real problems
The new app that goes fresh, local and green nearby the city of Trento and Trentino’s region

Our world needs innovation and young generations are the key to change the future… they just need a possibility!

The Transnational Innovation Vouchers (TIV) represents the chance that everyone is looking for. It is an opportunity offered by the ECIU network of universities that have a main goal: spread the value of innovation starting from the academic preparation.

FreshApp was born with this big dream: bring innovation in a traditional sector, as agriculture is, helping society to create social and environmental value with a long term sustainable impact. The goal was to support small farmers with a sustainable delivery system on a platform: the result is an online grocery reservation service from small producers, available to individuals as well as to restaurants or school and university canteens.

FreshApp won 5.000 euros to be used to enlarge the academic background on popular platforms such as MIT, edX, Harvard University to buy courses and receive a final certificate.

FreshApp was born with a solid idea and thanks to a fantastic team, a well organized strategy, the app became real!

FreshApp story:  Once upon a time there were six students from the Innovation Management course in a town in a valley surrounded by mountains. This sounds like the beginning of a good story, indeed it is!


Our story starts in the Adige Valley and specifically in its capital, Trento.

Trentino’s main cultivations are apples, pears, and grapes, among the most widely consumed fruits in Italy; despite this, production has been stagnant for more than two decades.

In addition to this, the market is fragmented, dotted with very small or large production companies, with technology struggling to establish its presence.

Our initial idea was to help small and very small farmers get their products out to a wider “audience.” Since we are students and know very well the problems involved in grocery shopping, especially for fruits and vegetables, with prices often very high forcing us to buy frozen products often also due to lack of time, we focused on a target audience more familiar to us: college students.

Later we realized that another sector would also gladly benefit from a product that is more tied to the local area and as much as possible zero kilometer: restaurants.

We validated the problems we hypothesized with a problem validation process through the development of a survey submitted to samples of people from all three of our targets, and subsequently we  collected the responses.

Thanks to the feedback, which also provided us with food for thought, we created our solution, Fresh App. It is an app that will enable the management of orders from restaurants and end customers – students and non-students – allowing farmers to create a larger sales network within the local community.

Due to the fact that we decided to provide a service to three different categories with different problems and needs, the app will have three different interfaces depending on how you log in: one for farmers, one for restaurateurs, and one for end consumers.

Once the solution was also validated through surveys and phone interviews, we focused on the communication strategy. Our ideas developed around billboards, QR codes to be scattered in the city – to make it easier to download the app – and a “VegStand.” The latter would be a mobile stand, where it will be possible to find food totally based on fruits and vegetables from the small farmers who collaborate with us, and will allow everyone to experience what Fresh App is and taste the products that can be purchased through our platform.

We plan to launch the app in the market as soon as possible and for it to be successful we also need the help from you.

Spread the word, start talking about it, promote the use of FreshApp which is sustainable and will allow you to learn even more about the flavors of Trentino.

We look forward to seeing you using our app and coming to visit our stands.

Order Fresh, Order Local, Order on FreshApp!

Make Innovation a reality, not just your imagination!!

Freshapp’s Team: Rebecca Cimbalo, Francesca D’Agostino, Emma Di Liberto, Mattia Rossetti, Fernanda Sauca, Francesca Virzi

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