Is anyone else worried about the price of Soylent?


#1

I was really happy to find out, this morning, that Soylent will now ship to Canada. Until I read the full email, that is. The price of 230 $ for a month, for the US, seemed just a tiny bit more expensive than my regular diet, yet absolutely affordable. Also, I could easily give the extra little money for the huge convenience and health boost that Soylent represents.

However, with the price jumping to 270 $ a month for international orders, I’m not so sure, now. I’m pretty poor and trying to save up, and as thus I try to keep the total cost of my food around 50 $ a week or less. When you’re vegetarian, it’s infinitely easier to keep the cost of food down. Especially when you’re a student who ends up living off bread, pasta, peanut butter, carrots and fruit. Usually it’s less than 50 $, even. But assuming 4 weeks in a month, Soylent is 67.50 $ a week.

I’m sort of worried that this would create a hole in my budget. So now I’m wondering. Is it unwise, when you only have 379 $ left in a month after rent, phone, Internet connection and bus pass, to spend 270 $, instead of the usual 180-200 $, on food? Is the much healthier nature of Soylent worth it?

Also, right now it’s just beginning and actually still in funding, but in time, it’s said that Soylent will be affordable. What prices can we expect in the future? I’ll admit the 150 $ a month that Rob described in an earlier blog post is quite tempting. Will we be seeing that at some point?

At any rate, I think it would be a shame not to at least try it out. I mean, even 270 $ isn’t a huge fortune if it allows me to be a lot healthier. But what about afterwards?

I know it’s a wide topic, but that’s the point. Thoughts and discussions on this wide topic are welcome.


#2

Is anyone else worried about the price of Soylent?

No.

As you said, this is the initial price, where the money is use to set up their business - it’s expected that that price will come down after a while.

The material cost for my own Soylent is similar, but at the moment I’m only supplying 10 or so people - in bulk things become much cheaper. :slight_smile:


#3

I expect the price to fall with scale.The biggest thing is finding economical freight. Many careless US vendors don’t look for economical freight options for international orders. If Soylent is smart, they could use freight forwarding for all of their Canadian orders and then use local couriers.


#4

Nope, not worried. I’ll echo CuriousBen’s comment, it was made clear that this is the initial price for the start-up. But even at $230, that comes to $7.67/day or about $2.56/meal. I average $6-7 for lunch and anywhere from $10-20 for dinner, so the cost for me will be much lower using Soylent.


#5

Well, I’m quietly hoping that the price will be lower than $100/month for basic formula. It doesn’t sound improbable, does it?


#6

What about adding lentils to your diet, it’s like Soylent in a grain. :wink:
You guys up north seem to produce a lot of it, so in theory should be cheap up there.

http://nutritiondata.self.com/facts/legumes-and-legume-products/4338/2

  • A lot of protein (your diet looks really protein deficient)
  • A good amino acid profile
  • Lots of minerals

edit: fixed formating


#7

You have to cook lentils, no? Raw I thought they contained potentially toxic compounds.


#8

You’re right, the same goes beans. The link I sent is for the cooked/boiled lentil nutritional information.
My suggestion is not to eat lentil powder. But to include cooked lentils in his current diet, which is mostly wheat flour.


#9

I’m on £81/month right now, what am I doing wrong?


#10

How much and what kind of protein are you using?


#11

Soy isolate at 200g/day. Apparently a rice/pea mix is better balanced and cheaper, but they’re more difficult to source.


#12

people should stop taking the prices mentioned in the campaign as the final prices. some part of these prices is a donation of a sort, helping fund the business. I’m sure we’ll see a significant price drop once Soylent (Nom?) is publicly available.


#13

I think the problem is that we-the-public have become pretty sceptical when any corporate or government “they” say that anything will be cheaper in a while. Hard to blame people when they have been lied to so frequently and persistently. Soylent is now a corporation and must expect to be subject to scepticism as such. All the more so when the officers of the company are conspicuous by their absence here on the forums – I know they are busy people at this stage, but at least one of them is supposed to be tasked with marketing and public communication. I’m sure many of us have searched Ensure and a multitude of other “meal replacement drinks” on the Internet and taken careful note of the ripoff prices that prevail in this sector. Soylent Corp. is going to need to prove that it is not like that. Consumers – even partisan consumers like virtually 100% of us here on this forum – are simply not going to take it on faith that Soylent will be cheap, easy and available as per the statements made in early days before the tremendous crowd-funding response turned this into such a big deal. Please understand – I’m not trying to be sarcastic or hostile, but rather to state the simple facts of life that Rob & Co will need to live with in order to succeed with Soylent.


#14

@J_Jeffrey_Bragg I’m not sure why you think they are absent from these forums. I have seen rob respond directly many times. If he is tagged I have seen him respond within a couple of hours.


#15

Also, I’ve been meaning to ask… Why is the shipping so expensive? I mean, shipping to a northern US state or to Canada should be about the same distance. Is it the customs? It seems a little odd to me that shipping across the ocean to the UK and shipping just next to the US to Canada would cost the same.


#16

Basically that’s why, @VirgaHyatt I’m quite well aware that he is here regularly and sometimes responds if tagged, but he and the other officers leave the impression of keeping a rather low profile and not answering very many questions. If that’s a mistaken impression, then so be it.


#17

It’s not uniformly expensive. There are some couriers who will ship relatively inexpensively into Canada, but others don’t compete very hard for that business. Many online stores offer Canadian shipping as an afterthought, and don’t get too fussed by the ridiculous shipping charges.


#18

You’re right, we haven’t been as proactive as we could be in monitoring and responding to the forum. Please do feel free to tag me if you would like a guaranteed response. Also please note that this forum’s original intent was to provide a space for people to discuss DIY Soylent, and bounce recipe/formula questions off Rob, rather than an official channel for communication with Soylent Corporation – it’s great that it’s evolving to encompass both roles.

Shipping is hard – a month’s or even week’s supply of Soylent has significant weight and volume, and the domestic shipping prices are artificially low because we’re able to use USPS flat-rate boxes – once we have to actually pay for the size/weight of the shipments, the price rises dramatically.


#19

@Julio_Miles Well, I suspect quite a few people here would be very grateful to know from you or Rob what the retail production price of Soylent will be once the production line, whosever it is and wherever it might be located, is up and running, doing its thing. I think a lot of people may be trying to plan their lives around this thing – I wouldn’t do it, but it sure sounds like quite a few are doing so, probably because their lifestyle, gastric and/or medical problems have left them with a certain feeling of desperation over daily problem of nourishment. Soylent sounds like a lifeline to many of these folks, but they need to know for sure what it will cost them, in order to make their plans. You guys have aroused some very powerful hopes and expectations and I hope you are prepared to ride the whirlwind. (BTW I hope you keep the name “Soylent” – “Nom” leaves me with the image of a fat baby sitting with a pacifier/dummy stuck in its mouth, I dunno why, it just does!) Julio, nobody is sure how this thing is going to be done, who’s going to actually produce it, where, what the distribution network will look like, what the price will be, or whether any of these things have even been finalised as yet.

Speaking of finalising! Several people have mentioned that “Soylent is open source.” That’s a little odd to me – because where IS this open source? I know a preliminary list of ingredients was published early on, but Rob declined to specify quantities and sources of those ingredients, citing safety concerns! Personally I would have thought it safer to publish such a list with full specifics, rather than having each and every DIYer trying to thrash out the details for himself; we’ve already seen a couple of people make scary mistakes, frightening themselves with unexpected bodily reactions. But yeah, “open source” – is it still open source if the code itself is not publicly posted anywhere? You tell me, I’m not a geek so I don’t know just how much disclosure is necessary in order to consider something open source. Also we know that Soylent has gone at least to v. 0.6 (because of the photo on the campaign page) and probably a lot further than that, but with only that early ingredients list actually posted publicly. The campaign page has said in its FAQ “We are almost done finalizing the Soylent formula” for – what? a week or ten days now? So… when will the definitive formula be unveiled?

Shipping – yah, that’s a tough one for everybody. It’s the first thing I look at whenever I go to buy something on eBay, because no matter how attractive the price, an exorbitant shipping rate can make the purchase uneconomic. You say “a month’s or even week’s supply of Soylent has significant weight and volume” – one thing I expect would help a lot of people would be to know what that weight and volume is for the various supply options. Right now we don’t know whether a month’s worth of Soylent is the size of a case of sardines or a case of paper towel rolls! That makes it tough to think effectively about the ins and outs of shipping. Three months of Soylent – a full pallet? half a pallet? or what?

People here on the forums really want to know this stuff…


#20

They already answered those question on other posts. I say this becouse I know what difficult it could be to people to go through all those posts to read those specific anwsers. And although they still deserved an answer, I supossed it is a little difficult to the staff from Soylent to do the same and answer to every question. And well, I’ve already read the same questions reapeted. And as the number of people interested in Soylent come to the forum, it will be like this over and over. So maybe you should consider putting all this questions with their respective answers in the FAQ. Start to accumulate them and publish them in the FAQ and as more of them appear, also putting them there. Like that, people on Soylent can just put a link to the FAQ if there’s a new guy that wants to know something it’s already been discussed. And you can focus and those new questions that deserve a proper answer from the staff. I also understand the idea of being close to your costumers and if that is and will be a policy on Soylent, I’ll be really glad. Anyway, is just an idea. Also, PLEASE forgive my english. I try to make all the sense I can. Thanks for all your effort on making out lifes easier and healthier.