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29 : 01 : 18

29.01.2018 Beauty : Food : Sustainability

UK workers struggle to save, new innovations to reduce plastic and the continuing renaissance of frozen food.

1. Shiseido revamps Tokyo flagship store

Shiseido The Store by Nendo, Tokyo Shiseido The Store by Nendo, Tokyo
Shiseido The Store by Nendo, Tokyo Shiseido The Store by Nendo, Tokyo

Tokyo – The company’s flagship Beauty Centre has undergone a redesign in collaboration with Japanese architecture practice Nendo.

Now called Shiseido The Store, the showroom has been renovated to focus more on the group’s prestige brands. On the first floor, the retail space, which used to display Shiseido’s range of brands from drugstore to luxury, is now focused on its higher-end Clé de Peau Beauté and Shiseido lines. Another addition will be on the fourth floor, where in February, a new café and event space will open called Shiseido The Tables. Alongside food and drink, customers will be able to attend workshops and events.

The re-investment in the flagship store is particularly geared towards creating a Beauty Temple for international tourists. WWD reports that the store has hired both English- and Chinese-speaking associates to cater for these customers.

2. Burger King explains net neutrality through the Whopper

Whopper Neutrality by Burger King

US – While net neutrality has become a topic for debate in the US, many consumers are hard pressed to define what it is and why it matters. In a marketing stunt, Burger King aims to make consumers more aware of the issue through the metaphor of a Whopper.

Net neutrality regulates internet service providers to ensure that no website or content provider is favoured over another in terms of speed or access. In the ad, Burger King applies the logic of slow lane or fast lane access to its signature burger, offering customers a ‘slow’ Whopper for £3.50 ($4.99, €4) and ‘hyper-fast’ burger for £17.50 ($24.99, €20).

The advertisement can be seen both as a way for Burger King to capitalise on current headlines and as a means to inform the public about the debate.

How much brands should contribute to social debates that have ethical implications will be explored in our forthcoming Trend Briefing in March. You can buy tickets here.

3. Prize-winners rethink plastics

Davos – Winners of a £700,000 ($1m, €800,000) prize aimed at reducing ocean plastics were announced at this year’s World Economic Forum.

The Circular Materials Challenge tasked participants with developing alternatives for plastic packaging materials that often end up in the ocean. The five winners split the prize evenly, and will also join a year-long accelerator programme with Think Beyond Plastic to help bring their projects to scale.

One winner, a team from the University of Pittsburgh, created a recyclable material that would replace complex packaging that has to use multiple layers of different plastics, which makes it impossible to recycle.

Each of the innovations brings us one step closer to a fully recyclable or even zero-packaging future that is in high demand by consumers.

Circular Materials Challenge winner by University of Pittsburgh Circular Materials Challenge winner by University of Pittsburgh

4. Field visualises intangible technology

System Aesthetics by FIELD System Aesthetics by FIELD
System Aesthetics by FIELD System Aesthetics by FIELD
System Aesthetics by FIELD System Aesthetics by FIELD

London – Creative studio FIELD’s latest art series, commissioned by Wired magazine, imagines the invisible force of artificial intelligence.

The long-term research project, System Aesthetics, aims to create visual metaphors for the abstract technologies that are beginning to control every aspect of our lives. The studio aimed to make voice assistance, face hacking, generative adversarial networks, autonomous driving and digital currencies all more tangible through illustrations for Wired magazine, and as animations on FIELD’s website.

‘Increasingly, AI affects all aspects of our world, yet it remains one of the least understood subjects,’ said the studio in a press statement. ‘As ever-more complex data systems are driving our lives, our focus as designers and artists is to create new metaphors that help people, brands and institutions talk about these abstract and intangible things.’

Similarly, design duo Arvid&Marie sought to make autonomous, machine-learning entities more understandable with their project on display at Dutch Design Week 2017.

5. UK workers are not financially prepared for the future

Despite employment in the UK reaching a record high in 2017, a new survey by the Royal Society for the encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce (RSA) has found that economic insecurity is a widespread problem, with a third (34%) of respondents considering themselves to be ‘just about managing’.

This anxiety about current financial status and future savings is being combatted by fintech start-ups such as micro-savings app Pariti or Wealthsimple, an investment management platform that aims to make Millennials understand their finances better.

6. Thought-starter: Can frozen food ever taste fresh?

Following the premiumisation of the frozen food sector in recent years, Foresight editor Daniela Walker reports on the new plant-based launches coming to market.

In the UK, frozen food retail is now worth £6bn ($8.5bn, €6.8bn), and an increase in premium frozen food led to a 5.4% rise in sales in 2017, compared to a 0.6% decline the year before (source: Kantar Worldpanel).

Adding a new layer to the frozen food renaissance is a renewed focus on vegetables as brands seek to capitalise on greater consumer awareness of plant-based diets.

In the UK, frozen vegan ready meal company Allplants focuses on bringing new flavours into the freezer. ‘As the surge towards plant-based living explodes in popularity and importance, [we are] perched at the intersection between delicious food creativity and incredibly healthy convenience,’ Alex Petrides, co-founder of Allplants, tells LS:N Global.

In the US, Daily Harvest introduced its Harvest Bowls this January, a line of six frozen grain- and legume-based bowls that feature global flavours such as chimichurri, tahini, kimchi and chipotle.

For more on innovations in plant-based frozen foods, see our Fresh Frozen microtrend.

Harvest Bowls by Daily Harvest, US Harvest Bowls by Daily Harvest, US