News 21.09.2023

Need to Know

Our exclusive Home States Futures webinar, the environmental cost of AI and why alternative milk is Americans’ favourite plant-based drink.

Join us online on 19 October for our Home States Futures launch event

Shift by Samsung and Form Us With Love, US

Global – As offices become more social, intimate and personal, how are homes set to change? Our Home States Futures: Residential Retail online event, taking place on 19 October from 4:30pm to 5:45pm BST, will explore the Hometopian adventure set to take place over the next 3–5 years.

In this session, expect practical insights, exclusive debates and discussions examining the future home – in terms of how we broker time, maximise wellbeing, re-assess usage, reduce waste, embrace data and develop new ways to add side-hustle revenues from our sitting rooms.

Panellists will include industry leaders and innovators who will present valuable insights in a rapid-fire Q&A session.

As a member of LS:N Global, you get free access to all online events. You can RSVP here or sign up via our Community. You can sign up here if you are not yet a member.

Don’t miss out on the launch of our new Home States Futures macrotrend – sign up now.

Delta promotes diversity with Faces of Travel initiative

Faces of Travel by Delta, US Faces of Travel by Delta, US
Faces of Travel by Delta, US Faces of Travel by Delta, US

Global – Delta Air Lines has launched its Faces of Travel image library, comprising 200 photos and 40 video clips that authentically depict diverse travellers enjoying extraordinary experiences around the world. These images are available to download for free on Adobe Stock.

In an industry where travel marketing often features a narrow representation of individuals, typically focusing on white, able-bodied, cis-gender and heteronormative people, Delta’s initiative is a positive leap towards inclusivity. All assets were captured by Korean-Mexican photographer Seo Ju Park in Cape Town, South Africa. The airline’s collaboration with Adobe is part of Delta’s commitment to increase representation within travel culture, encouraging diversity in image and video content used in social media and tourism ads.

The initiative, which was brought to life in partnership with creative company Kin, aims to inspire more people to see themselves in faraway places, expressing their identities, while building a more welcoming and inclusive future.

Strategic opportunity

Capturing new travel audiences hinges on showcasing an understanding and acceptance of a range of identities. Young generations will not support businesses that fail to foster safe spaces, so consider the initiatives and strategies you must put in place to be inclusive and identity-affirming

Microsoft’s AI ambitions raise concerns over water consumption

US – The environmental cost of building artificial intelligence products such as ChatGPT surprisingly involves gallons of water. Microsoft alone used more than 2,500 Olympic-sized swimming pools of water in its data centres in 2022 to cool the powerful supercomputers involved in language model training.

In an environmental report released in May 2023, Microsoft revealed a 34% spike in its global water consumption from 2021 to 2022, reaching almost 1.7bn gallons. In Des Moines, Iowa, the firm pumped in about 11.5m gallons of water (6% of all the water used in the district) to keep the supercomputer running effectively on the hottest days of July 2022.

Shaolei Ren, a researcher trying to calculate the environmental impact of generative AI tools at the University of California, estimates that ChatGPT uses 500ml of water every time it is asked anything from 5 to 50 prompts or questions.

As the race to develop generative AI accelerates, keep up to date with developments on the environmental impact of artificial intelligence in LS:N Global’s Artificial Intelligence and Sustainability Series.

AI imagery by The Future Laboratory, UK

Strategic opportunity

Technological developments will only help to make the world a better place if they can be created as sustainably as possible. Conduct thorough environmental impact assessments such as evaluating water and energy usage, waste generation and carbon emissions when introducing a new technology to your business

Stat: Alternative milk tops Americans’ plant-based preferences

Stockeld Dreamery, Sweden Stockeld Dreamery, Sweden

US – New research shows that plant-based milk alternatives are Americans’ most consumed plant-based food and drink items. The Food Industry Association (known as FMI) introduced its Power of Plant-Based Alternative Foods and Beverages 2023 report at the Plant-Based World Expo in New York in September 2023.

After surveying a nationally representative sample of 1,062 US grocery shoppers aged 18 or older, the FMI revealed that plant-based milk continues to be the most regularly consumed plant-based alternative, drunk by at least one in 10 shoppers daily, with 28% drinking it at least once per week.

The report also highlighted that 26% of consumers are largely unwilling to try plant-based foods. Unsurprisingly, 64% of shoppers already consuming some plant-based food and beverages are much more likely to be willing to try new and different plant-based alternatives. As explored in The Brands Making The Dairy Aisle More Sustainable, demand for dairy alternatives is here to stay.

Strategic opportunity

Given the popularity of plant-based milk, businesses – from retailers to hotels and restaurants – can seize the opportunity to diversify their offerings. This includes introducing new flavours and formulations, such as oat, almond, soy and pea-based milk

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