Packaging and Shipping questions


#1

Hello, I’ve been excited about Soylent since first seeing their kickstarter last year. This seems like a great product and the openness from the company and the community (especially with the DIY Soylent section) make it much better than any similar products.

I have a few questions about shipping and packaging:

  1. If I place an order now will I be charged now or when my order ships?

  2. The packaging seems too fancy and possibly wasteful for 3 meals. Would it be cheaper to just put them in single serving plastic pouches instead or is light a major issue for keeping the potency of ingredients?

  3. Will production ever meet demand? Many people are waiting until the shipping times are more reasonable to place their order and there will be a significant portion of customers who will be reordering and subscribing to regular shipments shortly after their first products arrive. What are the bottlenecks? Packaging? Ingredients? Factory space? Funding?

This product seems like it has so much potential but if a competitor pops up that can deliver faster, you guys might lose, and I’d hate to see that.

If you ever have excess products then just throw them on Amazon for a slightly increased price to make up for the fees they charge.

Can we see some pictures of the factory? Can we get some real numbers on the amount of products that can be produced weekly? What do you expect demand and supply to be in 6 months?

Soylent is a winning product, there is a huge amount of support, but 3 months expected shipping is inexcusable. What can we do to help? Just ask the community to help source ingredients or factory space or funding and we’ll gladly help.


#2
  1. You will be charged now. As I understand this its a shortcoming of their current provider of their billing system.

2)The packaging is mainly done by their co-packer, RFI, and changing them at this point would be costly. The packages where developed and ordered before a change in the Soylent 1.0 recipe.

  1. Rosa Labs is currently working on their own manufacturing center, and may keep RFI on until they can keep up with demand. One of the ingredients, the brown rice protein isolate has only one manufacturer who caused one of the Soylent delays. The process for making this specific isolate is new, and only the current provider can make it. Rosa Labs received 1.5million USD in VC seed funding for their own manufacturing center. Due to cost of shipping, Soylent may not drop below its current cost (which is an issue to some people).

I can only guess that they recently got their in-house-manufacturing up, or RFI re-tooled another center to ramp up production. It feels like they are producing more now than they where a few weeks ago (more people claiming to have received their Soylent or tracking number).


#3

Some pictures can be found on RFI’s website.

I don’t see where you’re coming from with this. A single bag and bottle for a whole day’s worth of food is less packaging than what my breakfast from Burger King came in.


#4

I was referring to the in-house factory that they are building or have built. The last time I saw the manufacturing for Soylent was when they were using large plastic containers and hand mixing ingredients.

The thought came from this: http://i.imgur.com/tdJ8bBU.png (Haiti water pouch, could also be white to block sunlight). I was just thinking of anything to help speed production and possibly reduce cost (even though it’s already extremely affordable). This would also allow them to change the recipe without having to reprint these packages, just a single cardboard paper with the ingredients would suffice for me personally (the ingredients might be legally required on the packages though on second thought).

It seems like they are very early in their production and shipment process. Hopefully they’ll start shipping out much more product very soon. I just can’t recommend it to friends and family because of the potential 3 month shipping time (November if ordered now).


#5

The in-house mixing of Soylent was only during the beta tester phase. All Soylent 1.0 that has shipped has come from RFI. they have plans for future in-house packing, but they’re not there yet.