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02.10.2017 Food & Drink : Luxury : Technology

In today’s daily digest: Sweden’s biometric train tickets, a smart scale that tracks health, rethinking sustainable packaging and more.

1. SWEAR offers bespoke luxury trainer designs

SWEAR, London SWEAR, London
SWEAR, London SWEAR, London
SWEAR, London SWEAR, London
SWEAR, London SWEAR, London

Global – SWEAR has launched two services that enable customers to create bespoke luxury footwear. Customise 48 Hrs offers basic personalisation such as choice of material within 48 hours, while Customise 360 lets customers take complete control of the design process using 3D modelling technology.

With a choice of exotic materials such as crocodile skin, python skin and ostrich leather, SWEAR has priced the services between £175 ($234, €198) for the most basic iteration to £6,750 ($9,017, €7,640). Customers can create their designs either on the brand’s website or on tablets at SWEAR’s luxury retail partners, which include Browns in London and Barneys New York.

Personalisation has long been a selling point in the luxury sector, but now brands such as Frilly and SWEAR are demonstrating how technology can be used to streamline the process.

2. Swedish train operator uses microchips as tickets

SJ Railways, Sweden Train operator SJ, Sweden

Sweden – Train operator SJ is enabling commuters to buy tickets using a microchip embedded in their hand. Train conductors can scan the biometric microchip using an app, with the information transmitted using near-field communication (NFC). According to the company, about 3,000 passengers have already had the technology implanted.

SJ is not the only company in Sweden to offer biometric microchips. Digital innovation firm Epicenter lets workers exchange their staff passes for chips, while Wisconsin's Three Square Market has employed Swedish company Biohax to manufacture radio frequency identification (RFID) chips that facilitate everyday tasks such as buying snacks.

In popular culture biometric microchips have retained an aura of mystery and glamour, but in reality they are being used for mundane tasks.

3. The Adore smart scale offers a true picture of health

California – Medical company DynoSense has created Adore, a smart scale that offers personalised health and wellness advice.

The artificially intelligent device scans the user’s body to offer insight into body mass index, visceral fat, and water and protein content, among other metrics, to provide at-home diagnostics of overall health.

Users can monitor their health through analysis of their body composition, with the associated app providing tailored advice on how best to maximise their performance. The app also lets users chat with friends and medical professionals to further guide and inspire their healthy lifestyle.

In our Self-Quants Tribe we met the early adopters using technology to gauge and track their health and wellbeing.

Adore AI scale Adore AI scale

4. Redesigning packaging to be more eco-friendly

Ecobranding by Sylvain Boyer Ecobranding by Sylvain Boyer
Ecobranding by Sylvain Boyer Ecobranding by Sylvain Boyer
Ecobranding by Sylvain Boyer Ecobranding by Sylvain Boyer

France – French designer Sylvain Boyer has redesigned some of the world’s most iconic logos as part of his Ecobranding project. The image series addresses the amount of ink used to produce brand logos, and offers alternative designs that require less ink. His design for the Nike tick logo, which features a white space in the centre of the graphic, requires 24% less ink than the original logo.

‘To transform a logo into an eco-friendly logo, we start from the initial shape of the logo without deforming it, but we ‘dig’ a little inside to reduce its environmental impact,’ Boyer told Fast Company. Brands such as Marks & Spencer are increasingly developing new packaging solutions to reduce their environmental footprint.

5. Women control almost one-third of global wealth

According to Julie Fox, national sales manager at UBS, brands need to do more to capture the attention of female investors. ‘Women want to invest in organisations with diversity in senior leadership, and they want to invest in social wellbeing,’ Fox explained to delegates at Luxury Daily’s Women in Luxury conference. For more on female entrepreneurialism download our free Female Futures report here.

6. Thought-starter: Can technology get people cooking again?

The world has gone foodie mad, and yet people seem to be cooking less than ever. Insight editor Daniela Walker explores how new product launches and technology are bringing consumers back into the kitchen.

There are more than 70m posts on Instagram hashtagged with the term ‘foodie’ and yet people are spending more time on social media looking at food than they are cooking it. According to a survey of 2,000 people by OnePoll commissioned by Lurpak, more than 50% of UK consumers prefer to watch a dish being cooked on television than try to do it themselves.

With that in mind, new innovations are bringing chef flavours and techniques into the kitchen, but simplyfing the steps to almost take the intuition out of cooking. One example is the range of powders by Califonian restaurant Shed. They include charred aubergine and smoked onion, and enable cooks to achieve more complex flavours without the effort. Similarly, technology such as BuzzFeed’s Tasty One Top are taking the guesswork out of cooking.

For more on the rise of Anti-intuitive Cooking, see our microtrend.

The Shed pantry range, California The Shed pantry range, California