The food innovation movement is booming. In late September at Expo Milano, our partner organizations the Future Food Institute and Food Innovation Program hosted Feeding Fair, a hackathon focused on building solutions to malnutrition. One hundred and fifty participants from around the world came together to learn about malnutrition challenges and prototype diverse solutions. Today, we’re excited to highlight the innovative projects that came out of the event, and we look forward to tracking their progress over the coming months.
Guest Post by Sara Roversi, founder of Future Food Institute.
There was heavy rain. There was strong wind. There was even stronger coffee (thankfully). On Wednesday, September 23, more than 150 bright minds came together at Expo Milano in Milan, Italy for the Feeding Fair Hackathon, presented by Future Food Institute, Food Innovation Program and WikiExpo. Students and experts from around the globe came together to tackle 7 of the world’s biggest issues surrounding malnutrition, including obesity, undernutrition, food waste, dietary habits and education.
Each group was presented with a case study focused on a challenge related to a specific country or pavilion at Expo Milano. We created the challenges by speaking with various pavilions and asking them to share their perspectives on the issues around malnutrition (this compilation video highlights the interviews from which the challenges were inspired).
Using design thinking techniques, the teams went out into Expo learn more about their challenges and to get feedback on ideas for potential solutions. In just five hours, teams developed prototypes, which they presented to a team of expert judges.
We were blown away with many of the solutions that emerged from the event.
MylBread was crowned as the winner. MylBread is focused on decoding dietary habits and targets the German market. In Germany, bread, a staple food, is becoming increasingly industrialized, and consumers are faced with products that are nutritionally deficient and full of empty calories. MylBread proposes an online platform for small scale bread producers that use quality and nutritionally dense ingredients. The platform aims to help German citizens get re-acquainted with the tradition of bread in their country. Ideally, the service would also integrate delivery and online ordering.
MylBread will go on to present their ideas at a special ‘Innovation Day’ organized by Up group in Paris, and after that, one member of the team will present their project at The Mont-Blanc Meetings (Les Rencontres du Mont-Blanc) in Chamonix-Mont-Blanc, France.
Feeding Fair doesn’t end here. The winning team will continue to develop and refine their projects, and a number of other presenting projects were approached by various mentors and experts to help them expand on the work they started at the hackathon. Feeding Fair took a tremendous step in educating and bringing to light various problems surrounding global malnutrition. It was incredibly inspiring to see 150 different thinkers come together in the name of making change for a better food future.