(Photo courtesy of MilkCrate)
MilkCrate wants to help you live sustainably.
Philadelphians can now use the mobile and web app to find nearby sustainable businesses. The app lists nearly 2,000 businesses, using criteria from its partner organizations like Fair Food and the Sustainable Business Network.
That means that most of the businesses listed now are members of those organizations, though businesses can apply to be listed on MilkCrate. Right now, the 1.0 version of the web app is just a searchable list of sustainable businesses that shows you the business on Google Maps when you click on it.
MilkCrate’s Android app is available now. An iOS version is
coming soon also available now.
The startup also launched a crowdfunding campaign, looking to raise $20,000 to build the next iteration of its product. MilkCrate is also raising a seed round. The plan is to bring the service to several U.S. cities.
As of this writing, MilkCrate has raised more than $5,200.
The idea behind MilkCrate, as founder Morgan Berman, 29, puts it, is that people want to shop at and support businesses focused on sustainability but don’t know where to find them. While sites like Angie’s List and Yelp help people find businesses, “there is no central digital hub for sustainable businesses in your area,” MilkCrate spokeswoman Caitlin Honan wrote in an email.
Organizations like B Corp and the Sustainable Business Network, which are MilkCrate’s partners, only offer listings of their members, while MilkCrate pulls all of those businesses under one umbrella, she added.
The company is eyeing a few revenue models, including sponsored ad campaigns and premium users, Honan wrote.
Berman, of Fairmount, leads a team of eight, including developer Jason Cox, who formerly did contract work for Firefly and also worked at Indy Hall-based event space marketplace ShareMySpace. Berman recently got her master’s in Sustainable Design from Philadelphia University.
And if you’re wondering how Berman got Eagles linebacker Connor Barwin to promo her startup, it’s because he’s “really into sustainability and biking in the city,” she said, and he’s working on an urban park project she’s helping with. Also, he was a friend of a friend.