Build It Up

What is Yuka ?

Yuka is a French startup that operates in the consumer tech field. It was founded in 2016 by Julie Chapon, François Martin, and Benoit Martin. 
Yuka is a mobile application that provides users with information about food or cosmetic products’ ingredients and healthiness, and this is possible by simply scanning the barcode of a product that users find in supermarkets.
Actually, Yuka’s mission is to help consumers make better choices for their health, and this also leads manufacturers to offer better products.
Furthermore, in 2021 the “Eco-score” was added to the application services. This function evaluates the environmental impact of products based on the ingredients that they contain.

The start-up has three main purposes: 
1 – Product evaluation
2 – Recommendation of the best products
3 – Classification per each product category

Furthermore, Independence is the company’s core value, indeed Yuka operates under three major principles: firstly, Yuka is a completely ad-free application, which means that food or cosmetic companies cannot pay Yuka to advertise their products. Secondly, the startup works without any sort of influence from the outside when elaborating scores and recommendations, and thirdly Yuka is very careful with its users’ data and for this reason, all the users’ data remains strictly confidential. Finally, Yuka quickly became a very popular application, in fact in 2023 it was the fourth-ranked free health and fitness app in the App Store. Therefore, around 94% of users stop buying products when they are rated as “Bad” and supermarkets and cosmetic companies are changing recipes and are more and more committed to achieving green ratings in the app.

How does it work ?

The app homepage consists of a camera with a scanner. Users can simply scan the products barcode they are interested in, and the product page will pop up, attributing a score out of 100. Products are ranked through a traffic-light system of “Excellent” (which corresponds to green color), “Good”, “Mediocre” or “Bad” (which corresponds to red color). 
Also, a summary of the product’s negatives and positives will appear beneath, and the app will auto-generate alternatives for which the customer can opt for. 
Once the user scans an item, the information is going to be permanently accessible under the History tab. As Yuka does not accept money from brands, the startup revenues come from its users via a sliding scale membership that maxes at $19 a year. The membership provides: unlimited search of the Yuka database (otherwise customers can only fetch the information of products that they are literally holding in their hand), offline scanning, and custom alerts that notify users of the presence of palm oil, gluten, or lactose.