Creating Solutions to Improve Food Security, Sustainability & Health
Working with technologists, researchers, developers, business leaders, indviduals and NGOs, we explore, test and develop new and innovative food service and food production solutions to meet the environmental challenges of our rapidly changing world. Engaging in collaborative innovation through the establishment of networks and partnerships and using systems design thinking, Ideaspeak fosters and manages projects in both the private and public sector with a principle focus upon transforming our food systems for the good of all.
Why Focus on Food Systems?
Improving our food production, distribution and service industries is one of the major challenges of our time. With security risks, pervasive hunger, malnutrition, obesity and environmental degradation escalating, our current food system requires significant change. This will involve a fundamental rethinking of structures and systems. Envisioning alternative systems of food production and food service that will nourish and support the health of a growing global population and provide economic development and security to the communities that support and depend upon the food system, is vitally necessary now. Work in Food Systems Innovation is as rewarding as it is urgent.
Innovating in Food Distribution and Food Service Markets
Millions of people around the world can neither afford nor access nutritious foods to feed their families. Global estimates indicate that more than 1 billion people in the world go hungry daily. Our current food system, which determines the way food is transported, distributed and sold, not only damages our environment but provides no access to affordable, healthy food for millions.
Ideaspeak innovates in the distribution and marketing systems to promote a more socially just food system, ensuring that healthy foods are more accessible and affordable.
Securing the Global Food Supply
The globalisation of the food industry means that food increasingly moves across borders with businesses becoming ever more mobile. International food companies are entering new markets daily to secure optimal prices for their food products. This transformation of the food industry poses high-level risk for regulators, food producers, sellers and consumers alike and will require a more consistent approach to food safety and quality standards across geographies. The difficulties posed by the need to maintain oversight over food supply chains is ever more challenging.
Ideaspeak innovates to create new International Standards for Food Service Operations and Food Production Companies, ensuring that safe and healthy food is accessible to all.
Improving Our Diet
In 2014, more than 1.9 billion adults, 18 years and older, were overweight. Of these over 600 million were obese. Almost 70% of Americans are overweight or obese. Diet-related diseases, including heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and cancer, are now among the leading causes of preventable death internationally, and cost more than $864 billion annually in the U.S. alone.
Ideaspeak innovates to improve the food environment and increase consumer awareness by providing access to information that will allow consumers to make healthy eating choices.
Reducing Food Waste
Each year 1.3bn tonnes of food or about a third of all that is produced, is wasted, including about 45% of all fruit and vegetables, 35% of fish and seafood, 30% of cereals, 20% of dairy products and 20% of meat. In the UK, approximately eight million tonnes of food is wasted post-manufacture, including households, retail and wholesale and the hospitality/food sector. It is estimated that nearly 60% of this could have been avoided. In the U.S., it is estimated that nearly 40% of the food produced, is wasted. Food that is wasted is an immense tragedy when set alongside the vast numbers of people globally who go hungry daily. Not only do people starve unnecessarily, but we also lose the water, fuel, and fertiliser that allowed the food to grow, be processed and distributed.
Ideaspeak innovates by creating systems for food distribution networks that minimise the amount of food that goes to waste.
Ideaspeak innovates with Food Packaging Developers to introduce new packaging materials and technologies that deliver reductions in food waste, improve food safety, provide brand protection and improve supply chain traceability.
Current Food Systems Projects include:
- Environmentally Sustainable Restaurants and Food Shops (Working with Designers and Food Retailers to create food service solutions in which waste is entirely a thing of the past and where food service equipment is efficiently designed, using minimal and clean energy for production and display.)
- Food Product Traceability and Sustainability Index (Working with Engineers on Systems that trace the source of all ingredients and visualise the resource expenditures on energy and water for all food products. The tools being designed will be provided to Consumers to assist them in making informed decisions on the products they purchase.)
- Food Operational and Food Equipment Standards
(Food Service Innovation in the Food Retail market has led to the introduction of new technologies, new operational practices and new types of food packaging. Research indicates that many of these practices and technologies have also introduced levels of risk for consumers. To address this, Ideaspeak consults with food service practitioners, food eqiuipment manufacturers and food safety regulators to develop new operational and performance standards that will minimize these risks in the future. Ideaspeak is working jointly with B.S.I.
to create these standards.)
- Intelligent Packaging - Food Service Solutions (The design and development of systems for fully recyclable packaging that prevents the diffusion of chemical substances from polymers in heated product packaging, improves integrity of packaging in heated environments, does away with the use of unsuitable plastics in food packaging and integrates packaging into full service solutions - return to source.)
- Food Management Systems with RFID Capability - (The design and development of Food Service Solutions that introduce packaging materials and technologies that deliver reductions in food waste, food safety improvements, brand protection and improved supply chain traceability.)