May we introduce to you Jammy. Him and his friends will be your mascot and helpers this weekend to guide you through tools and the design process of the jam! You will have already come across him in the Welcome Pack we send out yesterday, but thought a proper introduction would be adequate.
Big thanks to Tim Palmer Fry, one of the London Sustainability Team organisers, the creator of Jammies.
Closed Loop Systems have a ‘Cradle to Cradle’ approach whereby outputs from process stages feed into the next stage, hence waste and by products are eliminated. For a more detailed explanation with an inspiring project example explaining the process follow the link below and read about the ’From Cardboard to Caviar’ project on Open Ideo. Source: http://www.openideo.com/open/localfood/inspiration/closed-loop-systems-
I met Hilary Whitwell when I was picking up food and snacks for the jam from the Best Before Project, where she is one of the core organisers, and we had a chance to talk in the traffic.
What is your background and what made you decide to set out on your mission?
I am a physiotherapist by background who stumbled and then fell head first into this project. About 2 years ago I was at a Tai Chi workshop and during one of the breaks I idly picked up a magazine. In it
was an interview of Mark Boyle who lives without money and has set up skills sharing website called http://www.justfortheloveofit.org. I joined the network and a few months later Voytek Stando, the founder of Best Before Project, put out an appeal for people interested in setting up a group to stop perfectly good food being thrown away just because it is past its ‘best before’ date.
Can you describe a couple of high and low points on the way?
There have been very few low points but there have definitely been some ‘what on earth am I doing’ moments. What the hell am I doing in a warehouse in Holborn on a rainy Saturday evening helping unload crates of apples and pears before changing in the toilet on my way to a night out with friends? What has possessed me to get lost a hundred times in Brixton trying to find the People’s Kitchen to deliver some food? On reflection, the answer is easy – this project has enriched and changed me.
Name someone who changed the path you were on.
Before I got involved in this project I knew nothing about food labelling and very little about food waste apart from the fact that I knew that it existed and I thought that it was a bad thing. Voytek and Hanna Radlowska, a founding member of Best Before Project, both combine vision with practical sense and lots of hard graft. This combination is rare and is has made it clear to me that there is plenty of room for change if you are armed with a good idea and the determination to see it become reality.
Where have you got to now? How far have you achieved your initial goals?
The project has grown from strength to strength in the past 18 months and I don’t think anyone one of us could have predicted how much interest it has attracted. We started out in a borrowed garage in Tottenham (which we still have), collecting food from suppliers known to Voytek and distributing it to local charities. Now through partnerships with Healthy Planet and Lambeth council we have three more storage units in different parts of London and we have prevented over 40 tonnes of food being sent to landfill.
Find out more about Best Before at http://bestbefore.org.uk/
Design Opportunity: How could we make loose tea more popular?
Did you know most teabags contain a small amount of polypropylene? To gain an insight into which brands and why – this is a good read and maybe it triggers some ideas on how to avoid this problem in the first place by making loose tea more popular.
Project Wildthing aims to reconnect 1 million kids back with nature
Project Wildthing is an outcome of the ‘Wild Thing’ Good for Nothing weekend.
Ashtag app lets people geotag locations of ash trees and diagnose whether the tree is infected with Ash dieback desease. ‘It might prove a highly efficient tool to combat the spread of the disease.’ source - ashtag.org
UPDATE: There may be the opportunity at the Jam to improve the communication and visual identity of the Ashtag website. This will also be announced at the Jam, but if you’re interested get in touch!
The official government resource, including a PDF identification guide and a video can be found here
Michael Pawlyn: Using nature’s genius in architecture