Dear engineering students assigned to the Rude Food packaging project,
I think back to our brief introduction session together earlier this week and I am both enthralled and apprehensive of the prospect ahead.
Enthralled due to your engaging and well thought questions. Apprehensive as some of you might feel that the set task is outside of the gambit of your current course.
After saying our goodbyes I went downstairs to lunch where I happened to be seated next to the Flextrus representatives. They heard about the assignment given to you and immediately offered their surplus packaging material. The cuts, seams and inlays that remain after moulding and forming at their packaging plant.
Could we one day walk into a supermarket where the shelves are full of surplus foods and carry away our groceries in containers made with packaging leftovers from Sweden’s packaging houses? Perhaps a quick talk with the other groups will provide a possibility for a cross-group collaboration for your group assignment? Crowdsourced packaging?
Or stand in line for a catering where the plate was seamed together by a mix of various materials sourced from different plants?
You have been assigned to create a packaging concept for Rude Food Malmö. We describe ourselves as Sweden’s first food waste catering service and restaurant. We make this claim as we make an intentional step to place food waste as a consumers’ choice right there on the restaurant menu, on a supermarket shelf, on a bill of payment.
Your well thought questions will find more avenues for responses at this Reddit AMA session I conducted a few months ago and keep updating in lieu of an FAQ:
You are most welcome and indeed expected to drop in to observe and participate in our project activities in Malmö. You can perhaps make a food rescue run along with some of the Rude Foodies here. Or get hands on with helping us handle the fresh and dry, raw and processed, surplus foods that pass through the Rude Food kitchen.
Each of you will have access to this blog. I hope you will use this blog as a diary to share your work process in public.
As promised, I shall pursue the exhibition of your final works at the GO! Malmö campaign in Malmö with Malmö Fairtrade City and Miljöförvaltningen.
Attached is a pdf of the presentation I gave at the introduction session.
And a copy of the project brief I drafted for your assignment.
The attached image is taken at 3am after rescuing foods on the last night of the Malmöfestivalen. It is a portion of the approximately 700kg of foods we rescued at the festival that week. Most of the food we redistributed to other non-profits. Some that we could use were kept in the kitchen. We made onion butter, onion pie, caramelized onion out of the 30kg of raw onions we saved. Tomato sauce from the 10kg oftomatoes you see in the photos and so on.
Hoping we will have the opportunity to share more stories.
Rude Food Malmö