The Fast Food Revolution: GenNex Foods - The Next Generation In Fast Food For a Healthier Society

The dynasties of fast food all had humble beginnings from basic food groups. Now, after 40 plus years of watching the ill effects of processed fast foods on our youth, it is time for an entire overhaul of fast food as we know it. More than just adding a few 'healthier choice' menu items, it is time for the next generation of fast foods to put taste and nutrition on par with each other. A major makeover is long overdue. In this effort, a group of youth are chosen from around the country by an essay contest. Winners will share their ideas of what they think the best fast food restaurants of the future would be like, and then join a group of professionals (doctors, dietitians intuitionalists and marketers) to create the menu for the restaurants of the future. America's love for fast foods will not disappear because we have discovered it to be devoid of any meaningful nutritional value. The next generation of fast food will incorporate great taste of food, atmosphere and nutrition. Youth fighting obesity will love to spend time in the fast food restaurants of tomorrow because it will be an affirming environment in their quest to stay healthy right along with their peers. So, while youth may not be able to directly affect change in the medical arena, utilizing doctors and other health professionals to help them create products they will purchase with their own buying power helps youth to become complicit in their own healthcare. Parents who need to utilize take-out dinners due to busy schedules can feel good about feeding their families a high quality meal at an affordable price. These steps will create a new air of change in this country about fast food (incorporating good taste and a positive socialization environment) and will help begin to stem the tide of childhood obesity. It is not enough to tell children to exercise more, they must also have food choices that are exciting to help them maintain any success exercise provides. Kids will re-design healthy eating.

About You

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Location

Project Street Address

Project City

Project Province/State

Project Postal/Zip Code

Project Country

n/a

Your idea

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Focus of activity

Product/procedure

Year the initiative began (yyyy)

2006

Positioning of your initiative on the mosaic diagram

Which of these barriers is the primary focus of your work?

Patients not empowered

Which of the principles is the primary focus of your work?

Center consumers in business model

If you believe some other barrier or principle should be included in the mosaic, please describe it and how it would affect the positioning of your initiative in the mosaic:

There should be a category that captures the unique powerlessness of children to become agents of change in their own healthcare. In addition to understandable parental controls children have no voice in the medical model process and have no representative presence at the tables of decision making where their ideas can help shape effective initiatives. If this category were available, Arcar Inc's proposal would help to frame the discussion of how to utilize the power children do have (buying power) and harness it to create products that will help them in their efforts to control negative health issues such as childhood obesity. This model would disrupt the current model of things being done "to" and "for" children. Youth will show more sustained success if they own their own process.

Name Your Project

The Fast Food Revolution: GenNex Foods - The Next Generation In Fast Food For a Healthier Society

Describe Your Idea

The dynasties of fast food all had humble beginnings from basic food groups. Now, after 40 plus years of watching the ill effects of processed fast foods on our youth, it is time for an entire overhaul of fast food as we know it. More than just adding a few 'healthier choice' menu items, it is time for the next generation of fast foods to put taste and nutrition on par with each other. A major makeover is long overdue. In this effort, a group of youth are chosen from around the country by an essay contest. Winners will share their ideas of what they think the best fast food restaurants of the future would be like, and then join a group of professionals (doctors, dietitians intuitionalists and marketers) to create the menu for the restaurants of the future. America's love for fast foods will not disappear because we have discovered it to be devoid of any meaningful nutritional value. The next generation of fast food will incorporate great taste of food, atmosphere and nutrition. Youth fighting obesity will love to spend time in the fast food restaurants of tomorrow because it will be an affirming environment in their quest to stay healthy right along with their peers. So, while youth may not be able to directly affect change in the medical arena, utilizing doctors and other health professionals to help them create products they will purchase with their own buying power helps youth to become complicit in their own healthcare. Parents who need to utilize take-out dinners due to busy schedules can feel good about feeding their families a high quality meal at an affordable price. These steps will create a new air of change in this country about fast food (incorporating good taste and a positive socialization environment) and will help begin to stem the tide of childhood obesity. It is not enough to tell children to exercise more, they must also have food choices that are exciting to help them maintain any success exercise provides. Kids will re-design healthy eating.

Innovation

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Define the innovation

The dynasties of fast food all had humble beginnings from basic food groups. Now, after 40 plus years of watching the ill effects of processed fast foods on our youth, it is time for an entire overhaul of fast food as we know it. More than just adding a few 'healthier choice' menu items, it is time for the next generation of fast foods to put taste and nutrition on par with each other. A major makeover is long overdue. In this effort, a group of youth are chosen from around the country by an essay contest. Winners will share their ideas of what they think the best fast food restaurants of the future would be like, and then join a group of professionals (doctors, dietitians intuitionalists and marketers) to create the menu for the restaurants of the future. America's love for fast foods will not disappear because we have discovered it to be devoid of any meaningful nutritional value. The next generation of fast food will incorporate great taste of food, atmosphere and nutrition. Youth fighting obesity will love to spend time in the fast food restaurants of tomorrow because it will be an affirming environment in their quest to stay healthy right along with their peers. So, while youth may not be able to directly affect change in the medical arena, utilizing doctors and other health professionals to help them create products they will purchase with their own buying power helps youth to become complicit in their own healthcare. Parents who need to utilize take-out dinners due to busy schedules can feel good about feeding their families a high quality meal at an affordable price. These steps will create a new air of change in this country about fast food (incorporating good taste and a positive socialization environment) and will help begin to stem the tide of childhood obesity. It is not enough to tell children to exercise more, they must also have food choices that are exciting to help them maintain any success exercise provides. Kids will re-design healthy eating.

Context for Disruption:

There is a unique powerlessness of children to become agents of change in their own healthcare. In addition to understandable parental controls children have no voice in the medical model process and have no representative presence at the tables of decision making where their ideas can help shape effective initiatives. Arcar would like to help frame the national discussion of how to utilize the power children do have (buying power) and harness it to create products that will help them in their own efforts to control negative health issues such as childhood obesity. This model would disrupt the current model of things being done "to" and "for" children. Youth will show sustained success in a process they help to create. In 2002 MarketResearch.com wrote: "The 41 million individuals in the United States between the ages of 5 and 14 have a direct buying power of more than $40 billion and influence $146 billion worth of expenditures every year. As large as these numbers are, the facts should come as no surprise to savvy marketers -- they've known for years that children are the key to a parent's wallet." Using the same marketing strategies that fast food giants have used on youth for decades to convince them that poor quality food was great, this powerful machine will now be used by the GenNex group to convince a new generation that these new menu creations that just so happen to be entirely healthy, also taste great. This group will help to redefine for our society what good food really tastes like through the creation of new menu items that will turn into favorites among youth and will marry health professionals into the meal creation process through helping our core youth group develop nutritionally optimal dishes. Doctors/dietitians/intuitionalists will become partners in this venture using food on the preventative end of the spectrum just as doctors and pharmacists work together using pharmaceuticals on the restorative end. Industry-wide effects should occur.

Delivery Model

Through the partnership of a national youth TV station (such as Disney Channel) , GenNex plans to reach a broad number of youth regarding the writing contest and youth group panel. Year one of this grant would be spent in development and implementation of the contest in partnership with the station's own get fit campaign. We look to reach youth ages 5 to 17 to enter the contest explaining what they think the fast food restaurants of the future should serve and look like. Winners of the contest will win a prize and will join the GenNex Think Tank which will be the leaders of the design team to create such a fast food prototype. Along with health professionals such as pediatricians, nutritionists and dietitians who will help create the nutritious and tasty menus (dishes will be categorize into "Eating To Live" groups such as "Hearts Love These"/"Great Thinker's Favorites"/"Energy To Run On"/"Fall For Fruits"/"Veggie Love"/"Drink For Your Health") and marketers who will help make fruits/vegetables and low fat meats enticing and exciting through the ideas kids bring to the table), this group will work in years 2-5 to bring this project to production. The revenue from such a successful prototype will go toward franchising and replication across the country with a portion of all eventual revenues going toward another aspect of marketplace disruption which is redirection of profits back into the business to sell fresh fruits and veggies right in our restaurants at a below market rate to enable even lower income families to cook fresher foods at home. We would place recipe idea tags near each food item for healthy meal suggestions, to help families design quick and easy meals at home using our fresh foods.

Key Operational Partnerships

We are in the process of contacting Disney Channel to partner with their get fit campaign for the writing project and possibly as partner for the resturant prototype. We have spoken to several medical professional in the Washington, DC/Maryland/Virginia area who are willing to participate in the GenNex projects as consultants. We are currently in search for a food company who is interested in partnering with us to help on the development of our prototype food line and store. Arcar will oversee and manage the coordination of all aspects of the project.

Impact

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Financial Model

In year one, there will be no revenue generated as the project will be in start up mode. It is our expectation that by year 5, at least 80% of operating costs will come from profits generated from product sales.

What is your annual operating budget?

$10,000

What are your current sources of revenue? (please list any sources that are foundation grants)

Arcar Inc. has recently relocated to the Maryland area in 2006. We completed 2 major projects for the Pennsylvania Developmental Disabilities Organization as well as smaller grants within our community which included the Pennsylvania Housing Authority-HIPPA Compliance Project. As a smaller organization, we carry very little overhead and are able to provide nimble response to our community's needs.

Effectiveness

Arcar has made a difference in the lives of children and their families in the Pittsburgh area for over 10 years. We provide family supports for over 500 children with mental and physical disabilities. Much of our work has included provision of counseling services for both families and individuals both children and adults. Our work has established us as a reliable organization with an accuracy of the pulse of the consumer and their assessment of their needs. That asset open the door for us to provide the State Disabilities Council with information on the effectiveness of community based mental health services. Our report provided a clearer understanding of where services could be improved across the state. Families were honest with us in ways they had not been with their providers of care, thereby allowing the State of PA to make changes in the way community mental health workers could provide service to families to make them more user friendly. We are proud that our work helped to bring about that change. We look to have the same type of impact on the lives of children across this country with the implementation of our GenNex project. When we see the extended bellies of the overweight children of America, and we think of the distended bellies of children in third world countries we realize that malnutrition is wrong in any context. Arcar is dedicated to doing something to help change this health epidemic which is overtaking our youth. While it is yet in infancy stage, we believe with the support of this grant, we will be enabled to carry out this innovation to the benefit of all children's physical, mental and emotional well being.

Which element of the program proved itself most effective?

It has not yet been implemented.

Number of clients in the last year?

It has not yet been implemented.

What is the potential demand?

If the current trend of fast food is any indication, we could realize the demand of over 4 million customers within the age range of 5 to 17 thorugh our start-up site.

Scaling up Strategy

Our priority for the next 3 years is to establish the GenNex Youth Advisory Group who will lay the ground work for what the healthy fast food industry will look like and with the assistance of professionals, create such a new standard within the food industry to create a better American diet and undo the damage done by poor quality foods of the past in order to turn around the affects of childhood (and even adult) obesity in cooperation with children themselves. The first roll out will be the television ads calling for contest entries. Next, judging and establishing winners and creating the collaborative communication network among our youth think tank (travel to at least 4 meetings a year along with regular video conferencing meetings to keep the progress going) By the end of year 3, we should have an established menu of acceptable recipes and a blueprint of the prototype restaurants that the youth group will also create.

Stage of the initiative:

1

Expansion plan:

The expansion plan will consist of the role out of the prototype restaurants which will serve the youth inspired, doctor approved dishes that inspire consumers (particularly children) to think about their food choices and the effects they have on their bodies. The menus for this restaurant will consist of incorporating fun facts while making food fun, fast and nutritious. Also, in offering fresh fruits and veggies below cost in our stores, we hope to encourage better eating on-the-go as well as at home. We will ultimately look to the health professionals involved to monitor a core group of consumers in a volunteer test group to prove/disprove the positive impact of our foods and provide statistical data supporting the need for this trend. If successful, additional products could be brought to grocery stores incorporating the idea of smart food for thinking people. The overall goal being to create a generation of people who will reject the current eating trends within in the fast food industry that are obliterating our youth before our eyes, and create a better option that could disrupt the 'business-as-usual' mentality of corporate food giants. Kids have the power to demand better food choices through their $40 billion buying power. It will however, take the help of us, as professionals who are willing to think outside the box for these kids, to create the opportunity for them to use their voice and creative talents in making a food product that is responsive to their needs.

Origin of the Initiative

Through the course of our work, we have noticed more McDonalds' cropping up. We heard rumors that fast food giants use mapping techniques to ensure a person should not have to travel more than 5 blocks to reach their stores. We also began to notice the girth of children we saw within our community. It was heartbreaking to see these children struggle to walk across the room, much less up a flight of stairs. We also noticed that youth who struggle with weight issues usually had parents with similar issues. The powerlessness of kids to change their circumstance at home and outside was overwhelmingly obvious. Yet, we also noticed the expendable cash and the food choices of these children. Their power is money. Their eating habits seem devoid of thought. Surely the impact these foods are having on their bodies go with even less thought. We realized our passion: to reverse this trend, NOW!

This Entry is about (Issues)

Sustainability

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What are your two main challenges to finance the growth of your initiative

Our main challenges consist of gaining a financial partner who will front the monies to help create this innovation. We believe that if we can get startup monies and tech support for the first 5 years, we believe we would not only become self sufficient, but able to support other child centered projects though our profits. Since we have no current overhead, all funds would be poured directly into this project. We will need equipment and additional space within the first two years. Our estimation at this point of the cost to scale up to full operations would be about $15 million dollars. Our second challenge is getting connected to the right people within organizations who might be interested in supporting our venture (ad agencies, food suppliers) who also share the same concern that it is time to turn the tide of a long standing institution that is having such a gravitas effect on our precious youth. It is our hope that we will be able to produce the sequel to "Super Size Me" and be able to say that this generation reversed this trend with impressive results.

How did you hear about this contest and what is your main incentive to participate?

Arcar is a social service agency that looks for opportunities to provide services to people that are overlooked by larger organizations. We hope to change the heartbreaking trend of youth who are too unhealthy to outlive their parents. We hope to bring about change towards great nutrition for life.

The Story

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Do you have an annual financial statement?

Not this year.

Do you currently have an annual financial statement that tracks profit/loss?

We do not currently have this in place.

Please describe the amount (and/or type) of funding you need to implement your initiative, at year 1 and at year 5.

We would need grant funding of $1 million for year one, along with technical support and $750,000 at year five.

267 weeks ago Alice P. said: Although quite some time, I want to share my views  about this QUOTE:"...unique powerlessness of children to become agents of ... about this Competition Entry. - read more >
376 weeks ago Carole Davis said: Carole Davis/Director Training & Development Arcar Inc. Waldorf, MD (412) 403-8518 arcarinc@aol.com I would like to welcome ... about this Competition Entry. - read more >
376 weeks ago Carole Davis said: --- about this Competition Entry. - read more >