News 21.02.2023

Need to Know

Groundbreaking juice bottles made with potato starch, an Emirates Boeing 777 flying with 50% sustainable aviation fuel and an introduction to junk fees.

GoneShells: the edible potato-based juice bottles

GoneShells by Tomorrow Machine in collaboration with Eckes Granini, Sweden
GoneShells by Tomorrow Machine in collaboration with Eckes Granini, Sweden
GoneShells by Tomorrow Machine in collaboration with Eckes Granini, Sweden

Sweden – Tomorrow Machine, an innovative design studio known for researching the future of packaging materials, has joined forces with juice company Eckes Granini to create GoneShells, a starch-based bottle that customers can peel, eat, compost and dissolve in water.

A collaboration between designers and researchers from the strategic innovation programme, BioInnovation, a joint venture by Vinnova, Formas and the Swedish Energy Agency, and experts from the RISE Research Institute of Sweden, these bio-based degradable bottles could revolutionise the packaging industry.

‘With a bottle designed to be torn apart after it has been used, like the peel of a fruit, the idea is that one can speed up the decomposition process,’ Anna Glansén, the founder of Tomorrow Machine, said in a statement. ‘When you break the packaging and put it in contact with water, a natural reaction starts to break down the bottle immediately – and that’s how we created a bottle that can disappear by itself.’

The re-usable packaging market has been around for a while (we expected its expansion back in 2019), but GoneShells is taking things further with a potato-based material that can be dissolved and eaten. With sustainability in mind, Tomorrow Machine has also broadened the food and drink experience. Appetites will adapt to those innovative materials affecting our day-to-day eating habits.

Strategic opportunity

As global governments continue to police plastic usage to slow global warming, food and drink businesses should consider new consumption experiences that would start with the content and end with the edible container

Ikea launches a smart sensor to measure air quality at home

Vindstyrka by Ikea, Sweden Vindstyrka by Ikea, Sweden
Vindstyrka by Ikea, Sweden Vindstyrka by Ikea, Sweden

Sweden ­– To tackle the overlooked issue of indoor air pollution, Ikea has introduced a smart sensor to measure and monitor air quality at home.

While air pollution has been a top-of-mind concern for some time, awareness of the risks associated with poor indoor air quality due to everyday activities like cooking or cleaning remains low. To help people have a better idea of indoor pollutants present in their homes and to act to improve air quality, Ikea has created Vindstyrka.

The high-performing smart sensor measures and monitors air quality in real time, indicating levels of harmful pollutants which can’t be seen with the naked eye, as well as air humidity and temperature. The sensor can be connected to Ikea’s proprietary hub for smart devices, Dirigera, where users can access insights on their home’s air quality and take action if they own additional smart home devices, such as an air purifier.

Since the pandemic and the democratisation of hybrid working, home has become a synonym for a wellbeing haven, laying the ground for the rapidly growing Conscious Homes market.

Strategic opportunity

The home needs to evolve to cater for heightened wellbeing requirements. Consumers want to know about concerns like indoor air pollutants, but it is also key to arm them with practical tools to assuage these issues

Emirates flies plane powered by 50% biofuel

UAE -- Emirates, the airline of the United Arab Emirates, has piloted its first flight powered 50% by biofuel. A Boeing 777-300ER had one engine filled with regular jet fuel and the other with Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF).

Emirates worked alongside GE Aerospace, Boeing, Honeywell, Neste and Virent to create 18 tonnes of SAF for the milestone journey. SAF is typically made from cooking oils, renewable plant sugars and fatty acids, and has a lower carbon footprint over its lifecycle than fossil fuel. The demonstration flight took off from Dubai International Airport and stayed in the air for more than one hour over the Dubai coastline.

The flight showcases SAF as a safe and reliable replacement for standardised jet fuel. Sustainability in travel is a top priority for consumers, and the Emirates test flight is a great example of a business making a concerted effort to reassure consumers that luxury experiences can be adapted to be less harmful to the planet. The test flight is also a timely demonstration of the country's commitment to innovative solutions to energy and climate change, as 2023 is the UAE’s Year of Sustainability.

Emirates, Dubai

Strategic opportunity

There is potential for plenty of guilt and woe for travel consumers when figuring out how to holiday without harming the planet. They are eager to connect with businesses that commit to eco-friendly practices and processes.

Stat: Most US adults support government’s plan to limit ‘junk fees’

Kaleidoscopic Home by Tin & Ed for Ikea’s Everyday Experiments at Space 10, Denmark Kaleidoscopic Home by Tin & Ed for Ikea’s Everyday Experiments at Space 10, Denmark

US President Joe Biden proposed a Junk Fee Prevention Act during his recent State of the Union address that would ban or reduce the unexpected (and sometimes unfair) fees imposed by travel, hospitality and entertainment businesses.

Junk fees include all the surplus payments charged by hotels (resort and amenities fees), airlines, event ticket retailers or tv, internet and phone service providers, which can charge over £166 ($200, €287) to terminate a contract early. Those taxes aren’t included in the upfront price, which means customers are surprised when they make their purchase.

A recent study by Morning Consult shows 75% of US adults surveyed support Biden’s proposals to reduce service fees for tickets purchased online for entertainment events and eliminate fees charged by telecommunications providers when consumers cancel their services.

In Neo-collectivism, we analysed how consumers shun individualism in favour of alliances decentralising industries and redistributing power at scale. The general approbation for the Junk Fee Prevention Act signals a new dynamic in which consumers question businesses’ maximisation of profits.

Strategic opportunity

Travel, hospitality and entertainment players should consider setting up new honest and reliable campaigns to separate themselves from junk fee-hungry businesses. Customers will reward integrity with trust.

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