IKEA plans to cut food waste in half by 2020 heres how

August 14, 2017 by  
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You now have one more reason to love IKEA . By 2020, the Swedish company plans to cut food waste by 50% at its stores — including its restaurants and smaller bistros. To accomplish this, employees will use digital scales to record the type and weight of food sent to the bin. In turn, they will learn the cost of the discarded food and its carbon footprint . Over time, the data will help the company make big changes. In the US and UK, between 30 and 40 percent of all food is tossed into landfills . This conundrum persists, despite the fact that 795 million people worldwide go to bed hungry each evening. IKEA’s new initiative will not only reduce the amount of methane pumped into the atmosphere as a result of rotting produce, it will hopefully encourage other corporations to tackle food waste in their own spheres. Said Ylva Magnusson, communications manager for IKEA Food. “Our ambition is to work together to create positive change together with other organizations and companies.” The new food waste system was launched in 2015 and rolled out to stores in December of 2016. By May 2017, 20 percent of IKEA stores had it installed. As a result, there has been a reduction in nearly 80,000 pounds of food waste. IKEA is now in the process of implementing the system in all of its 400 stores, which serve 650 million customers a year. When an employee enters the type and weight of a food into the new system, they are also required to record why it was discarded. Options include overproduced, expired, spoiled or trimmings (such as the top of a tomato). The process takes seconds, but it will ultimately help the company’s restaurants become much more efficient. As a result of the recorded data, IKEA’s menu is likely to change. If a certain part of an entree is regularly documented to be untouched, IKEA will take this into account to reduce food waste . Said Peter Ho, IKEA U.S. food sales leader, “If we do see a significant amount of waste over a specific period of time–let’s say at 2:00 every day we’re wasting so many meatballs–then that says for us that we’re overproducing, and if we’re overproducing , then we can train our co-workers to minimize that waste.” For the initiative, IKEA partnered with LeanPath – the company that produces the digital scale. The company’s CEO, Andrew Shakman, said, “The moment you start measuring with technology you begin to change awareness levels and you cause people to start to think differently. Whereas in the past they could just throw something in the garbage , now they have to stop and for a moment; they have to record something about it. In that moment, you’re not just collecting data, you’re communicating your values.” Related: IKEA is now selling solar panels and home batteries in the UK “What you’re doing is really engaging your front line and enlisting them as the change makers on this hugely important global issue ,” he added. “They are uniquely positioned to resolve it.” In addition to reducing food waste in its own kitchens, the company will also encourage consumers to waste less. This is critical, as the Swedish company estimates that “plate waste” makes up about 50 percent of total food waste. At a later date, IKEA will also work with suppliers to reduce waste upstream. As Fast Company reports, both plans fit in with IKEA’s larger vision to produce more renewable energy than it uses by 2020 and to offer more vegetarian products that have a smaller environmental footprint than traditional options. + Ikea Via Fast Company Images via Wikimedia , Pixabay , IKEA

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IKEA plans to cut food waste in half by 2020 heres how

BIG unveils Cactus Towers next to a car-free IKEA in Copenhagen

August 9, 2017 by  
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Enormous “Cacti” will soon pop up in the heart of Copenhagen . Architecture firm BIG has unveiled renderings for an eye-catching pair of buildings with a spiny appearance in the city’s Vesterbro district. Created in collaboration with Danish practice Dorte Mandrup Architects , the aptly named Cactus Towers are high-rise residential buildings that will be built next to a new sustainably minded IKEA store. Located next to the waterfront area of Kalvebod Brygge, the 74,000-square-meter site will comprise a new IKEA store, budget hotel, and green space in addition to the two planned Cactus Towers. The pair of buildings gets its name from the striking spiky-looking facade created by rotated floor plates. The corners of those floor plates create overhangs that provide shade. The buildings will rise to 60 and 80 meters tall and feature 500 “youth rooms.” Related: How Copenhagen handles bike jams The new IKEA next door to the towers will not have any parking on cars and will encourage shoppers to take away their smaller purchases on bicycle . The 1,250-room hotel also on site will be spread across two volumes and is expected to be the largest hotel in the Nordic region. The project is set to open in 2019. + BIG + Dorte Mandrup Architects Via ArchDaily Images via Dorte Mandrup Architects , BIG

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BIG unveils Cactus Towers next to a car-free IKEA in Copenhagen

IKEA teams up with NASA to design out-of-this-world space saving furniture

June 9, 2017 by  
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IKEA is teaming up with NASA for the coolest collaboration this side of the moon. The Swedish furniture giant wants to figure out how to make a Mars habitat feel like a real home, so they spent a few days at the MDRS Habitat in Utah. Their goal is to look for ways to tackle the problems of urban living (cramped spaces – check, toxic air – check) to find solutions to make life better here on Earth… or Mars. Real astronauts train at the MDRS Habitat in Mars-like desert conditions to prepare for space. This summer, a team of IKEA designers took up the residence in the space for a few days in a mini-training session. The scientists were isolated for 3 days in a confined space isolated in the alkali desert in order to do a little design brainstorming. The design team described it as camping – but better. IKEA wants to figure out how to make small living quarters with tainted air and water more livable. If they can make it work in a small Mars simulation, what is to stop them from making it work across the world? Related: IKEA unveils plan to lift 200,000 people out of poverty “I think that the essence of this collection will be about appreciating what we have on Earth: human beings, plants clean water and air. But also diversity and a sense of belonging – things that we take for granted on a daily basis. After this journey, it’ll probably feel pretty awesome to come home to my own bed,” said IKEA Creative Leader, Michael Nikolic. + IKEA

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IKEA teams up with NASA to design out-of-this-world space saving furniture

Zaha Hadid Architects completes first phase of Italys solar-powered high-speed rail hub

June 9, 2017 by  
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Italy is moving full steam ahead on the expansion of high-speed rail. The country recently celebrated inauguration for the first phase of the Napoli Afragola station, a solar-powered high-speed rail hub and major gateway to the south of Italy. Zaha Hadid Architects designed the eye-catching station, which doubles as a pedestrian bridge, and integrated energy-efficient systems such as solar panels and ground source heating and cooling. Located 12 kilometers north of Naples , the Napoli Afragola station will serve four high-speed intercity lines, three inter-regional lines, and a local commuter line. Once complete, the station will connect the 15 million residents of the surrounding southern communities with the national rail network to the north and Europe beyond. An estimated 32,700 passengers are expected to use the station daily once all lines are operational. Zaha Hadid Architects designed the Napoli Afragola station to double as a public bridge connecting communities on either side of the railway. “The design enlarges the public walkway over the eight railway tracks to such a degree that this walkway becomes the station’s main passenger concourse – a bridge housing all the services and facilities for departing, arriving and connecting passengers, with direct access to all platforms below,” write the architects. The elevated station also offers much-needed new public space for the area in addition to shops and other amenities. Related: Wind power now runs all electric passenger trains in the Netherlands Designed as “an extrusion of a trapezoid along a 450-meter curved path,” the sculptural station is constructed with a reinforced concrete base with 200 differently shaped steel ribs clad in Corian and a glazed roof. Natural light pours into the station through the glazed roof to minimize demands on artificial lighting. Integrated solar panels on the roof, natural ventilation, and ground source cooling and heating systems also reduce energy consumption. + Zaha Hadid Architects Images by Jacopo Spilimbergo

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Zaha Hadid Architects completes first phase of Italys solar-powered high-speed rail hub

Ancient Japanese tombs inspire nendos first public space design

June 9, 2017 by  
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Prolific Japanese studio nendo completed their first public space design that puts a playful and futuristic spin on its unlikely source or inspiration: ancient Japanese tombs. Located at Tenri Station in Japan’s Nara prefecture, the multipurpose public space is a 6,000-square-meter station plaza that includes amenities such as bicycle rentals, cafes, and a play area. The goal of the project, called CoFuFun, aims to encourage revitalization of the area through strengthening community bonds. The whimsical name CoFuFun combines the term ‘cofun’—the name of sacred tomb mounds that the Tenri region is known for—with the colloquial Japanese expression ‘fufun,’ which means happy, unconscious humming. Inspired by cofun’s grass-covered mounds, nendo designed the plaza with a series of circular white structures made from precast white concrete . The modern cofun also reference Nara’s mountainous geography with some structures depressed and others domed. Related: Bangkok’s Siam Discovery retail center gets a major redesign from Japanese firm nendo Steps cover the prefabricated structures, which are used for a variety of uses including seating, shade, play, and even skating. A cafe and other shops are built inside the domed cofuns. “The cofun are beautifuland unmistakeable, but blend into the spaces of everyday life in the city,” says nendo. “The alphabet spelling, “CoFuFun”, also brings in the “co-“ of “cooperation” and “community”, as well as – of course –“fun” itself. The result is a name whose Japanese and alphabet spellings mean similar things, so that foreign visitorsto the plaza will understand it in the same way, too.” + nendo Images by Takumi Ota

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Inside the big business of investing in supply chains

March 13, 2017 by  
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Kellogg, IKEA and others are seizing financial opportunities from improving lives and reducing the environmental impacts of millions of smallholders in supply chains.

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SPACE10 creates an open-source Growroom you can build at home

February 17, 2017 by  
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SPACE10, a future-living lab and exhibition space in Copenhagen, wants to change the modern food industry. In September, we shared news of the group’s Growroom – a spherical farm pod that lets you grow food just about anywhere. Now SPACE10 wants people to build their own Growroom right at home with open-source plans for the ingenious design. Grab some plywood and a rubber hammer and get ready to grow. The Growroom spherical garden helps to “empower people to grow their own food much more locally in a beautiful and sustainable way,” according to SPACE10. Last year, people across the globe, from Taipei to Helsinki, expressed interest in getting their own Growroom, but the group didn’t want to create a new way to grow local food just to manufacture and ship the pod across entire oceans. So they decided to make the concept completely free for people to build on their own. Related: The Growroom is a spherical farm pod that brings agriculture to city streets Although the Growroom has a tiny footprint, it is capable of growing substantial quantities of food in a small space. It is open in the center, so you can step inside and immerse yourself in nature even in the middle of the city. Not to mention food is more nutritious and tasty when picked and eaten fresh . The design was created by architects Mads-Ulrik Husum and Sine Lindholm. It requires 17 steps, 17 pieces of plywood, a rubber hammer, and some screws; you will also need access to a CNC milling machine or laser cutter – your local fab lab or maker space should be able to get you up and running. If you decide to make one of your own, be sure to let us know , and give a shoutout to @space10_journal on Instagram – we can’t wait to see what you come up with. + Growroom plans + Space10 Images via Alona Vibe , Rasmus Hjortshøj , Niklas Vindelev and Space10

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SPACE10 creates an open-source Growroom you can build at home

IKEA introduces Sladda, a chainless bike built for urban mobility

January 13, 2017 by  
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The next time you walk into an IKEA store , you might just be able to leave with a new bicycle. While it may seem to be a strange direction for a furniture company to take, the expansion into transportation connects with the company’s larger vision of sustainability . With more and more people moving to dense urban areas, car ownership is becoming increasingly impractical for many. As part of its push toward sustainability and elegant, everyday solutions, IKEA has designed an innovative new chainless bike that can be adapted for just about any need.

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IKEA introduces Sladda, a chainless bike built for urban mobility

The best indoor gardens to gift this year

December 6, 2016 by  
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It may be difficult to imagine gardening in the dead of winter, but thanks to modern technology it’s more possible than ever before. With holiday shopping in full swing, our eyes have been peeled for the brightest innovations in home agriculture. From full-on self-watering vegetable gardens , to mushrooms that grow from a log and a bonsai version of the redwoods , we were thoroughly impressed. Here are some of the finest indoor gardens to give your green-thumbed (and even black-thumbed) loved ones this year. Veritable Smart Garden – $142 Even those with the blackest of thumbs can grow a full vegetable garden from the comfort of their own home. The Veritable garden runs on a fully functioning autonomous system that provides water, light and nutrients to itself. It’s the perfect gift for wannabe gardeners with no outdoor space. Plantini Mini Plant House – $38 This stunning metal structure contains everything you need to grow magnificent violas housed in a luxurious sanctuary. The Plantini is a timeless and easily-assembled flat-packed plant house. Artisan Moss Preserved Green Wall – $45 to $650 These gorgeously preserved moss “plant paintings” require no light or watering at all. Handcrafted with 100 percent sustainably harvested moss, green plants and branches, these pieces are carefully preserved with non-toxic food-grade methods and pigments. As long as they aren’t exposed to too much sunlight, they will serve as beautifully verdant wall art for decades. IKEA Greenhouse – $30 Good design and affordability are baked into  IKEA’s PS 2014 Greenhouse . The lightweight hot house can be attached to a wall or rested on a tabletop. Fill it with herbs or flowers and it will instantly brighten any room. Its compact, one-door design allows for greens to flourish on a wall or next to a window, even in winter. Swiss designer Nicolas Cortolezzis conceptualized the piece for IKEA as a take on the “traditional Swiss chalet” and a “symbol of simplicity and harmony with nature, values that seem more important than ever.” Oyster Mushroom Log – $30 No need to forage for mushrooms when you have this. Anyone can enjoy freshly picked oyster mushrooms all-year-round with this clever kit. Watch these mushrooms sprout right out a beautiful, rustic log every two months. Bonsai Redwood Forest – $75 Invite one of the world’s most beautiful natural wonders indoors. The Bonsai Dawn Redwood Forest kit comes with everything the real place contains — redwood tree and moss seeds, soil, river stones, as well as bonsai scissors, a mini rake, a growing box, and step-by-step directions. Succulent Wall Planter – $110 Succulents are a divine gift, since they are bright, sculptural and also quite easy to maintain. This fantastic DIY kit beautifully showcases living succulents nested within a rustic wooden frame. It can be displayed as verdant wall art or as a chic centerpiece. Edible Flowers Seed Kit – $45 This flowering garden doubles as decor and cooking ingredients. The kit includes four varieties of edible flower seeds that, once planted, sprout from stunning glass vials nested in wooden blocks. + Inhabitat’s 2016 Green Holiday Gift Guide + Inspiring Gifts for the Green Thumb

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The best indoor gardens to gift this year

Non-profit creates open-source drinking water filter for 1/10th of the cost

December 6, 2016 by  
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The high-tech vision of open-source software meets low-tech design at non-profit organization OHorizons,  an international coalition of  innovators working to solve persistent global challenges. The team’s most recent invention is the open-source Wood Mold, designed to allow even the least experienced person to create a BioSand Filter that can deliver clean water at 1/10th of the cost of the traditional method. The Wood Mold is designed to be accessible by anyone who has  the DIY , open-source construction manual that OHorizons offers for free online. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0dwX9oXcrvc The team of technical, social, and commercial professionals  at OHorizons creates simple, easily implemented, low-tech applications that empower communities without the need for external capital or expertise.When designing new products, they follow certain principles to ensure wide adoption. The design must be simple, low-cost, locally sourced, flexible to meet the needs of different communities, and open-source (available to the public, non-proprietary). As such, the Wood Mold is accessible by anyone via the open-source, online construction manual. Literacy, technical skills, or electricity is not required, though the user needs some way to acquire the blueprint. OHorizons collaborates with local organizations that are already active in local community development, including LEDARS Bangladesh , which supports the construction and distribution of the Wood Mold manual in that country. OHorizons also supports projects in Ecuador, Kenya , and Mali. Related: Researchers design cheap mercury-free LED foil to purify water Over the past year and a half, over 400 people or organizations have downloaded the Wood Mold Construction Manual to create their own locally sourced BioSand filters. As a result of these distributed Wood Molds and the collaborative work to utilize them, 5,500 people have gained access to  sustainable safe drinking water access in their homes in 2016. Based on their success so far, OHorizons has set the ambitious goal of providing 1 million people in Bangladesh with safe drinking water access, via the Wood Mold BioSand filters, by 2021. + OHorizons

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