Designing Out Waste in Specific Environments


The Royal Society of Arts held a competition this year to 'Design Out Waste'. Ist prize went to Ian Crawford, a young product design graduate from Glasgow School of Art, for his innovative packaging and food delivery system. Ian explains that 'the brief asked for design proposals that would minimise waste, and offered the opportunity to look at the problem from a "broader systems or holistic approach" rather than providing "merely a quick fix".' As he says in his introduction "Our present systems are not sustainable Any attempt at a solution has to be bold and ambitious in scope." Ian's winning proposal is impressively detailed and certainly ambitious in its scope. He proposes to 'design out waste' through a more efficient grocery shopping experience. Ordering online, delivery to the door, all food in reusable containers. He has designed not only the delivery and pick up system, but the packing system as well which is made up of modular stackable volumes. Each container has a special airtight seal, an easy to open lid and a dissolvable label. The empty containers will be picked up as your food is delivered and taken back for cleaning as the van returns after the delivery round. The whole proposal appears effective, efficient and intelligent. Ian has picked up on service systems which are already working such as online ordering and home delivery, but has taken that further with the reusable packing. However this is the part that seems most problematic. How would food brands receive such a radical solution which doesn't appear to allow for individual promotion of their products?

I would also be concerned about the lack of connection between the food and the consumer which is already waning due to the clinical supermarket experience. However Ian claims that his service system would stop 1180 tonnes of packaging reaching landfill each year - that does seem impressive. Have a look at Ian's presentation and see whether you think this could be the future of grocery shopping. For further interest check out Petz Scholtus's proposal for Localunch. Via: o2 Group ::Ian L. Crawford