Sustainable Voices: Charlotte Aschim

April 4, 2019


Welcome to our Sustainable Voices series, where we talk to inspirational climate leaders around the world about their passions and projects.

Who, What, Where?

Charlotte Aschim, CEO and Founder of TotalCtrl, a leading food waste prevention software company.

What was your a-ha moment that made you become engaged in sustainability?

My a-ha moment was when I got first-hand experience with food waste from working in grocery stores during my studies. We threw away over 2 full shopping carts of food every day due to expiration dates.

What is your single best tip for someone who wants to do more for the environment on a personal level?

Eat the food you buy. Not only will you save time and money, but also be part of eliminating the dumbest environmental problem in the world, food waste.

What do you think will be the legacy of your generation?

I believe we will be the generation that will speed up the shift to a more circular economy.

What is the most critical technological breakthrough that needs to happen for the world to reach the 1,5 degree goal?

To reach the 1,5-degree goal we need to work together. This is also the case for technology. One of the major things I believe has to happen is that we have to open and share data to ensure innovation, sustainability and profitability.

What will this breakthrough demand from us as a society?

I believe governments play a big role in making things happen, but consumers must put pressure on businesses to open data and prove sustainable efforts. For businesses this means to fulfill customer demand.

What is your company’s most impactful contribution to fight climate change?

Prevention of food waste. 1/3 of all the food we produce is wasted, every year. Food waste is one of the world’s biggest challenges, from both an economic, environmental, and social point of view. The main reasons for food waste are lack of control, expired food and manual work. TotalCtrl’s vision is to eliminate food waste throughout the entire value chain by proving businesses with control over food inventory based on expiration dates. TotalCtrl will help the food industry into a new phase in the Industrial Revolution that focuses heavily on interconnectivity, automation, machine learning, and real-time data. Our smart digital technology with machine learning and big data harvesting will create a more holistic and better-connected ecosystem for companies that focus on food supply chain management.

In your industry, what do you think will be the most groundbreaking change over the next 10 years?

The food industry is a traditional industry, so if we are able to digitize a lot of the manual process within the industry we will be able to move the focus over to more innovation and profitable operations. Once this is in place we can start utilizing more machine learning and AI to improve planning, purchasing and usage of food.

Which brand (in general) do you think is at the forefront when it comes to sustainability?

The bigger the brand, the more impact they have. Even though a lot of brands communicate their sustainable offers, there is still more talk than action in the most cases. We all have to start somewhere, but I do like the approach IKEA, Tomra and Unilever have towards sustainable products and business operations.

What makes you climate positive about the future?

The speed of technology, innovation and the voice of the younger generation. We can make a change!

Is there anything else you would like to add?

YOU can make a change. Let’s make an impact!

Photo credit

Tori Lind

Charlotte Aschim is the CEO and Founder of TotalCtrl, a leading food waste prevention software company helping companies prevent food waste, increase profit and improve overall efficiency. Learn more about TotalCtrl here.