Behind the Happy Cow tanks and dispenser sits a layer of technology – without which the system could not work and could not scale.
Sam Webber is a full-stack developer based out of Saltworks. He’s been writing code for 10 years and loves manipulating code to bring ideas to life.
“I love being able to bend software at my will. I get a lot of pleasure in building something from nothing – when someone comes to me with an idea and I make it work,” Sam says.
Involved from the start
Sam met Glen in the early days of Happy Cow and helped with the early prototypes and ideas. After the first equity crowdfund in 2019, Sam developed the backend to Happy Cow’s innovative milk processing system.
“I’ve been working with Glen to build the software that powers the system and will allow it to scale. We built three native apps and two backend systems. One is for the consumer to find and purchase milk and also connect with the farmers. One app helps the vendors to order and deliver milks. And then there is an app for farmers to pasteurise the milk and connect with retailers.”
Software also monitors the milk to ensure safety compliance.
“The milk is tracked and logged across its entire lifespan from pasteurisation to purchase via the tanks. They send data to the cloud every second to measure temperature and to make sure that it complies with health and safety standards. That data is available in real time to the appropriate parties and it will alert us to anything that goes wrong.”
Happy Cow’s innovative milk dispenser also runs on code. It measures how much milk is dispensed and runs the payment system that instantly sends a portion of each sale to the farmer, the retailer and to Happy Cow.
Sam likens the dispenser software to the system behind Lime Scooters. “Instead of measuring kilometres, we’re measuring millilitres.”
The greatest challenge
This was probably the most challenging part of the system for Sam, because the development was linked to so many components beyond the code.
“The measurement was linked to the size of the tanks and the length of hoses. It was a unique challenge because so much was outside of the control of the code. I prefer when everything does what it’s told, but I did learn a lot. Eventually, we solved it by experimenting with different pumps.”
Sam says he loves being part Happy Cow Milk because he can see the potential for it to be really big.
“It’s been built from the outset to handle scale – and that means it can have a big impact. I love that this system cuts out the big needless supply chain. It cuts out the middleman to give more money to the farmer and I think that’s cool. It’s definitely part of a trend to use technology to connect consumers to producers, and I like that.”