Five ideas for the food system of the future

Together with the international innovation network MTF Labs, bread producer Polarbröd has selected five ideas for a future sustainable food system.

In the annual Future Recipe project, the initiators want to develop solutions to various sustainability challenges. This year's challenge is about a more sustainable meal: how we can inspire people to eat a more varied diet and reduce food waste.

Over 120 ideas were submitted from different countries. Polarbröd has now selected the five ideas deemed to have the greatest potential to contribute to the sustainable food system of the future.

"I am impressed by the quality and breadth of the ideas. Many feel very timely. The ideas come from Sweden, Portugal and Germany and it will be very interesting to see how we, together with experts from MTF Labs, can develop them further," says Karin Bodin, CEO of Polarbröd.

The next step is an innovation lab in Umeå on 14-16 March, where the ideas will be further developed into finished prototypes together with MTF Labs. During an event later this spring, the prototypes will be presented to stakeholders who will be offered to invest in making the ideas a reality.

The five ideas are:

An interactive documentary for children and young people to explore and increase their understanding of the whole process from farm to fork, so that they can make informed decisions about how to make their meals more sustainable.

A guide to inspire people to replace ingredients with better, more sustainable alternatives without sacrificing flavour.

An easy-to-use everyday machine for resealing original food packaging to extend expiry dates and reduce food waste in households.

Vertical cultivation systems of leafy greens in an office environment, using hydroponic systems and complementary artificial lighting. In addition to an improved working environment, this also contributes to locally produced goods.

A flexible starter kit for home cultivation of aquatic plants with the aim of making it more accessible, as well as increasing knowledge of different species and their benefits for Swedish food production.

Polarbröd is a family business founded in Älvsbyn in Norrbotten. It is now run by the fifth generation of the family. The company has grown from a small family bakery to become Sweden's third largest producer of bread. In 2022, the Polarbröd group had a turnover of SEK 1.3 billion and 270 employees. Polarbröd sold just over 29,500 tonnes of bread.

Lennart Håkansson