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Better Badges January 2020

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Giki’s mission is to help people live more sustainably. Our Giki Badges app does that by providing our users with simple, easy to understand information on over 280,000 UK supermarket products.

We also look to continuously improve Giki in order to help support our users in their quest to buy more sustainable and healthy products. Here we talk about some of the most recent changes. We know we will never be perfect, but we hope that by constantly listening to our users, and improving, we’ll get better and better over time.

Product carbon footprints

This month Quorn have announced an important milestone – they have provided carbon footprints for over 100 of their products. Currently these are available on line but they’ll be appearing on packs soon. Not only is it encouraging to see companies providing information that people really want to see but it also helps us be more accurate in awarding our badges. As a result we’ve updated Quorn’s badges and now they have some products which get the low carbon footprint badge (alongside other low carbon footprint products like vegetables and fruit!) with none of their products having high, or very high, footprints. We hope that many other companies will follow Quorn’s approach including getting the footprint calculated by a third party.

More user added products

This month there has been another influx of products from users. Thank you to everyone who has done it. We now have over 2500 products which have come from the Giki community.

Data quality and improvements

We have also been working on data quality and badge consistency in a number of areas:

  • If a product is plant based then we now adjust the carbon footprint rating so it cannot be higher than medium.
  • We’ve improved the applicability of the No Chemicals of Concern badge by removing products without ingredients lists where it is not relevant (e.g. nail clippers!)
    We’ve expanded our chemicals of concern list following work with Provenance. Whilst most of these chemicals are extremely rare one addition, Resorcinol, is found in colourants and so a number of products will no longer be awarded the badge.
  • Our coverage of nutrition data for Tesco products has increased
  • We’ve built additional algorithms to clean the data including this month for products which are not given any category. When this happens we cannot award badges because we cannot tell whether a badge is applicable or not.
  • The category Other Jams and Spreads has been moved to medium for carbon footprint. Further research into the category highlighted that it is too broad to be given a consistent low rating. This once again highlights the importance of companies providing more data in this area and is seen above with Quorn.

If you see anything in the app that can be improved please just hit “Help us improve” and tell us everything you can.