September 4, 2015 Last Updated 12:25 pm

UC Santa Cruz student launches iPhone app that let’s users find and share photos of local food

Foodworthy wants to build a social network of foodies, but requires users to immediately sign up before they can get a ‘taste’ of what the social network has to offer

As you can imagine, TNM gets its share of press releases each day. Keep ’em coming, though I offer no guarantees they will appear here (and don’t forget to include headshot in those personnel notices, I hate resorting to LinkedIn profile pics).

Foodworthy-iPhoneOne I received this morning was almost passed over until I saw that it came from Santa Cruz, California. I will be in Santa Cruz in a couple of weeks so it caught my attention.

Foodworthy is an odd little app all about taking pictures of food.

See what people in your city are craving by browsing real-time photos of the hottest, freshest, and most ‘food worthy’ dishes around. Want others to know about your great food? Snap a picture, pick a filter, and that’s it. Follow your friends and indulge in a truly social dining experience that will leave you savoring the moment, and appreciating all that your local restaurants have to offer.

The idea, obviously, is to build a social network of foodies who like to share pictures of what they are eating. I kind of understand that, because as a cook I every once in a while like to take a picture of my plate or the table if I am particularly proud of my effort. In fact, the wallpaper for my iMac is a breakfast table from a long ago meal.

“Younger generations are increasingly visual,” Woodworthy’s Josh Bernfeld said in his announcement for the app. “We have found that people overwhelmingly prefer a good photo with a concise review to a long, opinionated written review. Knowing this, we have produced a powerful app that both users and restaurants love.”

Bernfeld is from Southern California, but is attending the University of California, Santa Cruz, and looks set to graduate in 2017. His LinkedIn profile says no more, but a business filing states that Bernfeld has established his new company, Foodworthy Inc., with $90 in funding. If Foodworthy becomes the next big thing it will make a good story, no?


The app was originally released in mid-July and recently received its first update that added search and the ability to change locations easily, according to the app description.

But the app makes a basic mistake: it opens to a dialog page that requires the user to register before they can use the app. This is where I stopped immediately – I’m never going to hand over my information before I know what I’m getting in to. Because of this requirement, apps like this may get downloads, but they place an unnecessary barrier to eventual use. A better way to go about things would be to let the user in, see certain levels of information, and then require them to register to contribute or share the content. Building a community is hard, don’t make it even harder.

But, as you can see below, Josh has created a video preview of the app, and then there is that press release. Maybe these efforts, plus is one-page support website will drive enough interest to get things going.

Finally, I would normally have called Josh to learn more about his app, what he is studying at UCSC (and if he has some restaurant recommendations)… but the Labor Day weekend is upon us, and I’ve taken zero days off this year, so I’m out of here (returning Tuesday). Maybe he’ll see that he’s gotten a little publicity and will reach out next week. I’ll let you know. In the meantime, best of luck Josh.

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