Entrepreneur and electrical engineer Dinesh Tadepalli stepped into the Shark Tank season 13 spotlight with a tall vision, infectious smile, and sharp zeal. Dinesh wanted to change how people eat their food by eliminating the use of single-use plastic cutlery, one spoon, chopstick, and straw at a time. He mulled over the staggering use of plastic in our lives and elaborated on the damning consequences of the fleeting convenience
Dinesh asked for $500,000 for 7% equity in his startup and made an impressive case on behalf of the planet in his Shark Tank season 13 pitch. The Sharks were thrilled about his cause and saw promise in his vision, but his sales made them hesitant to bite.
What Is Incredible Eats
Incredible Eats is a delicious, healthy, and eco-friendly alternative to plastic cutlery and single-use utensils, heavily publicized for its disposable quirks. The owner, Dinesh Tadepalli, used chickpeas, corn, wheat, brown rice, and oats to fashion disposable, flavored, and edible cutlery with minimum calorie input.
An excited Dinesh introduced himself as the resident of planet Earth, bringing smiles to the Sharks’ faces. The enthusiastic entrepreneur then explained how the human need for momentary convenience damages their ecosystem. Dinesh’s invention was designed to minimize plastic use in food services and help the planet breathe. Incredible Eats approached an old-age problem from a fresh perspective, and the Sharks couldn’t agree more. Dinesh asked the Sharks if they were interested in saving the planet one spoon, straw, and chopstick at a time!
The Sharks appreciated his insightful pitch as Dinesh handed out the product samples. A-Rod asked Dinesh the time it takes for one Incredible Eats utensil to decompose while chomping on one of his spoons. Dinesh explained that his utensil could stay firm in a hot soup for 20 minutes and in anything frozen and cold like ice cream for an hour.
Kevin brought the conversation to the calorie intake, and Dinesh was happy to expedite the subject. He revealed that a pair of chopsticks has 15 calories, and the intake varies from utensil to utensil.
Lori was surprised to find the flavors tasteful and joked that the product could be sold as a snack and she’d still buy it. She liked that the utensils complemented the food they were served and could also be advertised as their extension, and all the Sharks agreed. She pointed out that the spoon served with the ice cream was vanilla flavored and could easily pass as a waffle cone. Kevin observed that there was more to the product than just functionality, and Dinesh reasoned that his main target, food services, wanted the product to be less overbearing for their consumers.
Barbara inquired about the production cost and sales margin, and Dinesh’s answers gave the Sharks a pause. Kevin was curious about the cost differential between a large volume of plastic spoons and Incredible Eats. In answer, Dinesh tried to bring attention to the additional profits his product would bring to the customers, but Kevin was not convinced. He repeated his question, dismissing the upsell scenario Dinesh presented, and asked about the cost differential again.
A-Rod asked Dinesh if he had sold anything so far, and Dinesh replied that he had sold 1.2 million spoons as of his appearance on Shark Tank season 13. Kevin asked the value in dollars, and Dinesh’s answer caught Barbara off-guard. The enthusiastic entrepreneur had only raked in $170,000 in sales in almost 3 years. Dinesh blamed the limited availability and COVID for the lack of traction in business and emphasized the product was doing well in its early phase.
Kevin announced that he didn’t want to burn energy on educating consumers, so he was out. Barbara pointed out that Dinesh is blinded by his vision and isn’t vigilant about the profit margins, so she was out. Daniel Lubetzky disagreed with Barbara and thought Dinesh’s enthusiasm fueled his business model. Still, he didn’t find Incredible Eats scalable despite the numbers and valuation showing otherwise.
After Daniel pulled the plug, Kevin offered Dinesh $500,000 for 35% equity stakes. He further added that Daniel was right about the valuation. Mark interjected that he could help Dinesh expand his reach and think big and offered $500,000 for 20% stakes. Lori quickly shut down Mark, saying Mark’s approach didn’t account for Dinesh’s vision. She offered the excited entrepreneur $500,000 for 15% equity stakes, promising to help Incredible Eats blow up in the market and not only in food service.
Lori’s offer prompted Daniel to come back with an offer of $500,000 for 25% equity stakes.
A hesitant Dinesh proposed a counteroffer of $5000,000 for 12.5% stakes to the Sharks, prompting Mark to drop out. With one Shark out of the loop, Dinesh didn’t miss a beat to close the deal with Lori.
Incredible Eats is still in business and working hard to help the environment. You can find the products on their website and on Amazon, including the new additions: bowls and knives. Dinesh has also introduced a thinner version of his original spoon and is continuously improving his product to accommodate market demands.
Our Review of Incredible Eats
Considering the damning consequences of climate change spurred by carbon emissions and plastic pollution, Incredible Eats seems like a step in the right direction. The product has no downsides compared to its plastic alternatives and is a tasteful treat to the consumers’ buds. If we look at it strictly from a progressive perspective, it can change how people eat their meals and takeaways for the better.
Pros of Incredible Eats
Cons of Incredible Eats
- Limited availability
Who Is Incredible Eats for?
Incredible Eats is for those who want to help their planet breathe and reduce their daily plastic consumption. People use a staggering amount of single-use utensils daily, polluting the sea and endangering marine life. The recent pandemic has shifted the conversation to climate change on more urgent grounds, and consumers are making conscious efforts to contribute to the cause.
Are There Any Alternatives?
Incredible Eats is the only environment-friendly, single-use, edible utensils on the market. Its plastic alternative is neither eco-friendly nor edible, whereas the paper utensils lack in the sturdiness department.
Our Final Thoughts
We think Incredible Eats should replace plastic utensils if we want a better future for the coming generations. If we continue to opt for cheaper alternatives, the time when we have more plastic in our oceans than fish is just around the bent. We understand Dinesh’s passion for his business model and think it’s only fair to help him in his cause as a citizen of planet Earth.