Page 1

Gayatri Mohan

M.S. Strategic Design and Management

May 2017

Parsons The New School for Design

REROOT Exploring strategies to make information about the food system readily accessible to consumers


CONTENTS

INTRODUCTION

MODULE 1: INDEPENDENT DESIGN RESEARCH

A. Quantitative Explorations B.

Observations

C.

Opportunity Map

D. Concept Proposal

MODULE 2: INTEGRATIVE STUDIO 2

A. Concept Feedback Report B.

Competitive Analysis

C.

Prototype Roadmap

D. Prototyping E. Further Development

REFERENCES


INTRODUCTION

There have been numerous initiatives to bring about transparency in the food system, to encourage people to buy local, and to reduce the vast influence of Big Food companies on our health, lifestyles, and on the planet. Through two semesters of research, ideation, and prototyping, I explored the idea of providing objective information about food directly at the point of purchase/consumption, whether that means uncovering the ‘true cost’ of food, or illustrating the journey of one’s food to the plate. My research culminated with a collaboration with industry partners to test my idea in the wheat and coffee industries, respectively.

3

Introduction


1A. QUANTITATIVE EXPLORATIONS


THE INDUSTRY TODAY

In 2015, American farmers harvested 950 billion pounds of corn alone. Yet, only 10% of that harvest made it into food we can eat, in the form of high-fructose corn syrup in a variety of packaged goods, caloric sweeteners, starch, cereals, beverages, and alcohol.

1

950 billion pounds of corn harvested in 2015

Animal Feed : 39% Fuel : 30% Exports : 12% Food & Seed : 10%

The majority of corn was used as feed for livestock, allowing farmers to concentrate more animals into smaller feedlots, maximize profits, and deplete resources faster than they can be replenished. Today, this kind of industrial agriculture in the United States accounts for:

17% of total fossil fuel use 2

5

51% of total land use 4

80% of total water use 3

Quantitative Explorations


A majority of this agricultural activity is controlled by just a few organizations that have continued to consolidate their power over the last decade. This means that there is little incentive to change the current system.

1998

30% of the global seed market is controlled by 10 companies 5

2009

56% of the global seed market is controlled by 4 companies 6

2017

80% of the global cornseed market will be controlled by 3 companies 7

WHAT DOES THIS MEAN FOR THE ENVIRONMENT?

+

618 million metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions in the US 8

6

173,000 miles of US waterways polluted by chemical runoff and animal waste 9

20 million square km of land experiencing desertification – 2X the area of the US 10

Quantitative Explorations


Beef Pork Chicken

100,000 75,000

Higher risk of cardiovascular disease, cancer, and diabetes with increasing consumption of red meat

50,000 25,000 2000

1990-99

1980-89

1970-79

1960-69

0 1950-59

Calories per capita

WHAT DOES THIS MEAN FOR OUR HEALTH?

Increasing consumption11of red meat between 1950 and 2000

$30-60 billion spent in medical costs per year in the US 12

WHAT DOES THIS MEAN FOR OUR CULTURE?

High Income Mid Income Low Income

Between 1900 and 1950, Americans moved less but also ate less. But in the second half of the century, they moved even less and ate more. 13

7

Just a little more than half the US population was cooking in 2007-2008 14

More Americans are relying on packaged food, which travels on average 1,300 miles to the consumer – half the distance between Los Angeles and New York 15

Quantitative Explorations


THE CONSUMER TODAY

On average, food expenditure made up 13% of total annual household expenditure in 2015 16

43% of that expenditure was on food eaten outside the home 17

Freshness Taste

26% of Americans cared about buying locally sourced food in 2015 18

8

83% cited freshness as a reason to buy local; 53% cited taste 19

Quantitative Explorations


1B. OBSERVATIONS


OBSERVATION VIDEO

I conducted in-person and video interviews to understand underlying attitudes, behaviours, and motivations around food. Below are snapshots of consumers, visitors at the Union Square Greenmarket, as well as a few experts with experience working in the food system.

10

Observations


KEY INSIGHTS

1.

Acquiring knowledge is an essential first step towards action.

2.

There needs to be an aspect of community around food. It is about more than just feeding ourselves.

11

Observations


1C. OPPORTUNITY MAP


THE LOCAL FOOD ECOSYSTEM

Below is a map of the various stakeholders in the local food system, and the channels through which each stakeholder could exert influence over another. Channels include Policy, Education, Distribution, Communication, and Taste. Ultimately, I was most interested in exploring the pathway of farmer to restaurant to consumer, through the channels of Distribution (between farmer and restaurant), and Communication (between restaurant and consumer).

13

Opportunity Map


OPPORTUNITY MAP

Here, I map out potential interventions across the channels of influence I identified in the ecosystem map, as well as others, including Experience/Community and Technology.

Monitor produce and freshness

Visualise the system w/ each bite/plate

Cooking demonstrations

Make visible what’s invisible

Product

Visualise the amount of meat vs. veggies on a plate Visualise waste

Experience Communication

Technology

Reverse the “liberate women from the kitchen” campaign Market low-income community garden projects as much as hi-tech, white, middle-class innovations

Communication /Education Reorganised grocery stores Partnership

Partner w/ healthcare provider for information

Product Curated experience to cook together at home Retreat on a farm (pick, cook, eat, clean up)

How might we facilitate a shift in our buying, cooking, and eating habits to support smaller local food systems?

Distribution

Small farmer network

Attend a dinner with strangers Experience

Donate/redistribute/ share leftovers Chef network

Attend a dinner with strangers

Experience /Community

Partnership

7-day challenge to cook at home

Explore food as a substance (unpleasant eating experience

Lunch network Community garden network

Communication

Taste

Find a partner to split shares with

Promote community garden involvement Experience

Make experiences like Blue Hill at Stone Barns more accessible

14

Partnership

Promote community garden involvement Donate/redistribute/ share leftovers

Explore food as a substance (unpleasant eating experience

Opportunity Map


1D. CONCEPT PROPOSAL


A NEW KIND OF RECEIPT

My research through the semester, and my specific interest in the farmer-restaurant-consumer pathway, led me to the concept of communicating with the consumer right at the point of purchase/consumption. For example, at the end of a meal at a restaurant, a diner might see a receipt detailing the ‘true cost’ of their meal, when externalities like transportation and labour are considered. Following are a few different examples of such a receipt.

Sidecar Bar & Grill

Sidecar Bar & Grill

577 Canal Street New York, NY 10034 Tel: 917-536-7000 Check #: 39580

577 Canal Street New York, NY 10034 Tel: 917-536-7000 Check #: 39580

Server: Deb

Date: 12/06/2016

Table: 11

Time: 21:26 Client: 2

1

Duck Terrine From: Stamford, CT Miles: 40 Prepared by: Julia Calories: 429

14.00

Table: 11

Time: 21:26

1

Tagliatelle From: New York, NY Miles: 7 Prepared by: Ed Calories: 369

16.00

1

Chocolate Mousse From: Brooklyn, NY Miles: 5 Prepared by: Mila Calories: 454

1 1 1 1

Oysters Duck Terrine Tagliatelle Chocolate Mousse

6.00 14.00 16.00 8.00

SUB-TOTAL: Tax: TOTAL:

SUB-TOTAL: Tax:

16

Date: 12/06/2016 Client: 2

1 Oysters 6.00 From: Long Island, NY Miles: 50 Prepared by: Ed Calories: 175

TOTAL:

Server: Deb

8.00

44.00 6.70 50.70

Your meal was sourced from: Long Island, NY New York, NY Stamford, CT Brooklyn, NY Ingredients in your meal travelled a combined 102 miles by road to reach you. Your meal was prepared by Ed, Julia, and Mila at Sidecar Bar & Grill. It took a total of 7 hours to prepare all components of your meal from scratch.

44.00

Thank you for eating with us!

6.70 50.70

Concept Proposal


Sidecar Bar & Grill

Sidecar Bar & Grill

577 Canal Street New York, NY 10034 Tel: 917-536-7000 Check #: 39580

577 Canal Street New York, NY 10034 Tel: 917-536-7000 Check #: 39580

Server: Deb

Date: 12/06/2016

Table: 11

Time: 21:26

Server: Deb

Date: 12/06/2016

Table: 11

Time: 21:26

Client: 2 1 1 1 1

Oysters Duck Terrine Tagliatelle Chocolate Mousse

TOTAL:

Client: 2

6.00 14.00 16.00 8.00

200.00 450.00 180.00 100.00

SUB-TOTAL:

44.00

930.00

Tax:

6.70 50.70

930.00

1 Farm

1 Farm

1 Farm

1 Farm

Oysters Process

Transport

CO2

Duck Terrine Process

Transport

Process

Transport

CO2

Transport

Prep

16.00 CO2

Chocolate Mousse Process

Prep

14.00

Tagliatelle

TOTAL:

17

6.00

Prep

8.00 CO2

Prep

SUB-TOTAL:

44.00

Tax:

6.70 50.70

Concept Proposal


2A. CONCEPT FEEDBACK REPORT


CONCEPT FLYER

The second semester focused on further developing and prototyping strategic solutions. I sent out a brief overview to food system experts to gather initial feedback on my concept. Below are two versions of my concept flyer; I found greater success with the second one, in which I dive right into the details of my concept at the outset.

ReRoot

REROOT

Designing smaller local food systems

OBJECTIVES •

Help consumers connect with the larger system (people, places, processes) behind a meal

Encourage consumers to buy locally, responsibly produced food

Promote the practice of cooking to preserve the rich diversity of cooking traditions around the world

Eating is about more than just feeding ourselves. With every bite of food, we are rooted to a much larger system of people, places, and processes. To start eating more sustainably, we must understand what we are eating, where that food is coming from, and what impact it has on us and the world. One potential vehicle to convey this information to consumers is the bill at the end of a restaurant meal. Everyone pays attention to the bill, and it could serve as a powerful platform to present information such as the costs of production, transportation, and preparation associated with a single plate of food, as in the examples below.

CONTEXT Industrial agriculture in the US today has become the dominant form of producing food, excluding family farm operations from participating in the mainstream economy. The industry is controlled by just a few organizations at the top that have continued to consolidate power over decades, leaving little incentive to change the current system. This has enormous impact on our environment, health, and our cultural traditions tied to food preparation and consumption.

618 million metric tons of GHG emissions directly from livestock farming

173K miles of waterways polluted by chemical runoff and animal waste

20m square km of land experiencing some level of desertification – 2X the area of the US

Higher risk of cancer, cardiovascular disease, and diabetes with higher consumption of red meat

Between 1900 and 1950, Americans moved less but also ate less. In the second half of the century, they moved even less and ate more.

Americans are relying more on packaged food, which travels ~1,300 miles to the consumer – half the distance between LA and NY

Just a little more than half the US population was cooking in 20072008

Presented here are three initial prototypes of a new bill, outlining the externalities associated with a restaurant meal. Prototype A to the right shows two price columns; the first is the price a customer would usually pay for the item, and the second is the true price when all externalities are accounted for. What seems like a simple $26 meal might actually cost more than $600 when the true costs of production, transportation, and preparation are considered. Prototypes B and C below display similar information with a greater degree of granularity. While the bill on the left focuses on sourcing and preparation, the bill on the right illustrates more visually the impact at each stage of the item’s lifecycle.

Oysters Duck Terrine

Table: 11

200.00 450.00

20.00

650.00

Tax:

6.70

26.70 650.00

1 1

Date: 12/06/2016

Table: 11

Time: 21:26

Client: 2

Oysters

From: Long Island, NY Miles: 50 Prepared by: Ed Calories: 175

Duck Terrine

Tax:

6.00 14.00

SUB-TOTAL:

20.00

Tax:

1

Oysters

From: Long Island, NY Miles: 50 Prepared by: Ed Calories: 175

Duck Terrine

From: Stamford, CT Miles: 40 Prepared by: Julia Calories: 429

Tax:

TOTAL:

Time: 21:26

6.00

1

Oysters

Farming

14.00

1

6.00

Transport

CO2

Duck Terrine

Farming

Transport

Prep

14.00 CO2

Prep

20.00 6.70

26.70

Sourcing and preparation information

SUB-TOTAL:

20.00

Tax:

TOTAL:

6.70

26.70

Visual representation of the impact at each stage of the item’s lifecycle

650.00

6.70

26.70

650.00

CONTEXT Industrial agriculture in the US today has become the dominant form of producing food, excluding family farm operations from participating in the mainstream economy. The industry is controlled by just a few organizations at the top that have continued to consolidate power over decades, leaving little incentive to change the current system. This has enormous impact on our environment, health, and our cultural traditions tied to food preparation and consumption.

Sidecar Bar & Grill 577 Canal Street New York, NY 10034 Tel: 917-536-7000 Check #: 39580

Server: Deb

Date: 12/06/2016

Table: 11 1

Time: 21:26

618 million metric tons of GHG emissions directly from livestock farming

173K miles of waterways polluted by chemical runoff and animal waste

Client: 2

Oysters Processing

20m square km of land experiencing some level of desertification – 2X the area of the US

Higher risk of cancer, cardiovascular disease, and diabetes with higher consumption of red meat

$30-60 billion/year are spent in medical costs to treat diseases related to increased red meat consumption

6.00 Transport

CO2

Preparation

High Income Mid Income Low Income

1

Duck Terrine Processing

14.00

Transport

CO2

Between 1900 and 1950, Americans moved less but also ate less. In the second half of the century, they moved even less and ate more.

Preparation

20.00 6.70

SUB-TOTAL: Tax:

26.70

TOTAL:

Prototype B

20.00

Organic/Natural Ingredients: Wheat flour (City, ST, # miles), unsweetened chocolate (City, ST, # miles), oat flour (City, ST, # miles), cocoa powder (City, ST, # miles), evaporated cane juice (City, ST, # miles), whey protein concentrate (City, ST, # miles), natural flavors, salt, baking soda, wheat gluten (City, ST, # miles), guar gum Processed/Other Ingredients: Erythritol, inulin, corn starch (low glycemic) (City, ST, # miles)

Americans are relying more on packaged food, which travels ~1,300 miles to the consumer – half the distance between LA and NY

6.70

Prototype C

After a pilot with an initial cohort of restaurants, ReRoot would expand to include nutrition/ingredient labels on packaged food (prototypes below). It would eventually align with emerging policy initiatives, like the recent New York State Grown and Certified label introduced by the NYS Department of Agriculture and Markets, under Governor Cuomo.

Just a little more than half the US population was cooking in 20072008

26.70

EVOLUTION

Ingredients: Wheat flour (City, ST, # miles), unsweetened chocolate (City, ST, # miles), erythritol, inulin, oat flour (City, ST, # miles), cocoa powder (City, ST, # miles), evaporated cane juice (City, ST, # miles), whey protein concentrate (City, ST, # miles), corn starch (low glycemic) (City, ST, # miles), natural flavors, salt, baking soda, wheat gluten (City, ST, # miles), guar gum

1

Date: 12/06/2016

Client: 2

200.00 450.00

Prototype A

Farming

SUB-TOTAL:

The true price when all externalities are considered

Time: 21:26

TOTAL:

Farming

14.00

From: Stamford, CT Miles: 40 Prepared by: Julia Calories: 429

TOTAL:

6.00

Table: 11

Client: 2

Oysters Duck Terrine

577 Canal Street New York, NY 10034 Tel: 917-536-7000 Check #: 39580

Server: Deb

Server: Deb

Time: 21:26

SUB-TOTAL:

Date: 12/06/2016

Table: 11

Date: 12/06/2016

Client: 2

6.00 14.00

577 Canal Street New York, NY 10034 Tel: 917-536-7000 Check #: 39580

Server: Deb

Server: Deb

Time: 21:26

SUB-TOTAL:

Sidecar Bar & Grill

Sidecar Bar & Grill

19

Date: 12/06/2016

Client: 2

The price a customer would usually pay for the item

Eating is about more than just feeding ourselves. With every bite of food, we connect to a much larger system of people, places, and processes. To start eating more sustainably, we must understand what we are eating, where that food is coming from, and what impact it has on us and the world.

1

577 Canal Street New York, NY 10034 Tel: 917-536-7000 Check #: 39580

TOTAL:

CONCEPT

1

Sidecar Bar & Grill

577 Canal Street New York, NY 10034 Tel: 917-536-7000 Check #: 39580

Table: 11

1 1

High Income

Sidecar Bar & Grill

577 Canal Street New York, NY 10034 Tel: 917-536-7000 Check #: 39580 Server: Deb

$30-60 billion/year are spent in medical costs to treat diseases related to increased red meat consumption

Mid Income Low Income

Sidecar Bar & Grill

Beyond Food A bill like this has the potential to have an impact far beyond the food industry. Consumers might demand a similar receipt for any product that involves materials sourcing, manufacturing, and transportation. Supply chain transparency has already gained momentum in many other industries, like fashion, and it would be easy to identify synergies with efforts in the food industry going forward.

EVOLUTION After a pilot with an initial cohort of restaurants, REROOT would expand to include nutrition/ingredient labels on packaged food (examples below). It would eventually align with emerging policy initiatives, like the recent New York State Grown and Certified label introduced by the NYS Department of Agriculture and Markets. Ingredients: Wheat flour (City, ST, # miles), unsweetened chocolate (City, ST, # miles), erythritol, inulin, oat flour (City, ST, # miles), cocoa powder (City, ST, # miles), evaporated cane juice (City, ST, # miles), whey protein concentrate (City, ST, # miles), corn starch (low glycemic) (City, ST, # miles), natural flavors, salt, baking soda, wheat gluten (City, ST, # miles), guar gum

Organic/Natural Ingredients: Wheat flour (City, ST, # miles), unsweetened chocolate (City, ST, # miles), oat flour (City, ST, # miles), cocoa powder (City, ST, # miles), evaporated cane juice (City, ST, # miles), whey protein concentrate (City, ST, # miles), natural flavors, salt, baking soda, wheat gluten (City, ST, # miles), guar gum

Beyond Food A bill like this has the potential to have an impact far beyond the food industry. Consumers might demand a similar receipt for any product that involves materials sourcing, manufacturing, and transportation. Supply chain transparency has already gained momentum in many other industries, like fashion, and it would be easy to identify synergies with efforts in the food industry going forward.

Processed/Other Ingredients: Erythritol, inulin, corn starch (low glycemic) (City, ST, # miles)

Concept Feedback Report


EXTERNAL NETWORK OF EXPERTS

Below is the list of experts to whom I reached out for feedback.

Name

Title

Organisation

Michaela Hayes

Co-founder

Rise & Root Farm

Dennis Derryck

Founder

Corbin Hill Food Project

Chris Carbone

VP, Consulting

Kantar Futures

Danielle Gould

Founder and CEO

Food + Tech Connect

Nina Meijers

Editorial and Creative Head

Food + Tech Connect

Christina Ermilio

Assistant Pastry Chef

Eataly

Maggie Shi

Board Member

Slow Food NYC

Misha Volf

Founder

Fodder

Bradley Christensen

Executive Director

Northern CO Food Cluster

Robin Puskas

Founder

New York Kitchen Company

Terry Frishman

Consultant

Culinest

Matt Canfield

PhD, Sociocultural Anthropology

NYU

Danielle Nierenberg

President

Food Tank

20

Concept Feedback Report


OUTREACH

Below is a sample of my outreach.

Gayatri Mohan <mohag824@newschool.edu>

Great to meet you yesterday! 

3 messages

Gayatri Mohan <mohag824@newschool.edu> To: crermilio@gmail.com

Wed, Feb 1, 2017 at 8:21 AM

Hi Christina,  It was a pleasure meeting you yesterday at the Slow Food happy hour! I wanted to reach out and tell you a little more about the new restaurant bill idea we talked about briefly.   I'm in the process of redesigning the bill at the end of a restaurant meal, to help the eater connect visually and emotionally with the larger system behind their food (i.e. the people, places, and processes involved in creating the items on their plate). This bill would include information beyond just the prices of food items, such as the number of miles each ingredient travelled to the plate, to name but one example. Perhaps, this knowledge will compel us to buy locally and responsibly, and prepare our own meals at home to preserve the rich cooking traditions we have developed over generations. Attached is an outline of my concept, a few initial prototypes of the bill, and how it might evolve. I would love your feedback as a baker yourself as I continue to develop this initiative! Looking forward to your thoughts, and hope to stay in touch! Best,  Gayatri ReRoot.pdf  178K Christina Ermilio <crermilio@gmail.com> To: Gayatri Mohan <mohag824@newschool.edu>

Thu, Feb 2, 2017 at 9:49 AM

Hi Gayatri, It was wonderful to meet you the other night as well. This idea is absolutely fascinating, and I would love to talk about it with you more!  Would you want to meet for a coffee/drink at some point to discuss? What does your schedule usually look like?  Looking forward to it! Christina  Christina Ermilio crermilio@gmail.com 508­887­2680

[Quoted text hidden] [Quoted text hidden]

<ReRoot.pdf>

Gayatri Mohan <mohag824@newschool.edu> To: Christina Ermilio <crermilio@gmail.com>

21

Thu, Feb 2, 2017 at 10:04 AM

Concept Feedback Report


SUMMARY OF FEEDBACK

Below is a summary of the feedback I received, categorised by Context (the setting in which my concept might come to life), Medium (the channel through which I might implement it), Content (the information I would make available), Logistics, Scope, and Impact (on both consumer and restaurant partner). Context

Medium

Content

• Eataly could support something like this, but it’s too big

• App? QR code? Website? But a lot of work for the customer

• Choose info to show for each item – they may not be able to calculate some things

• Coffee shop might be a better testing ground

• Menu? Show waste associated with each option – does it affect decision? • Opentable? Now you can pay through it, and the whole menu is there (for certain restaurants)

• Too many info types; pick one (e.g. the politics of soy) • Tricky to quantify cost • Miles is difficult to quantify b/c of mixed grade grains (a big part of our meals)

Logistics

Scope

Impact

• How is info tracked (from moment animal is born to when it gets on plate)?

• Artistic or commercial?

• Meaning and value of such knowledge to the consumer

• Why would a restaurant owner show this data to a guest and potentially lose business? • Have all info inputted in the system already, no one wants to add this manually

22

• Can you consider how to make existing info more legible and accessible?

• Any kind of actionable intervention beyond just being "food for thought?" • Consider origins of other labelling initiatives to inform your own transparency medium

Concept Feedback Report


2B. COMPETITIVE ANALYSIS


BENCHMARKING

To situate my concept within a broader external landscape, I identified 12 competitive players in the industry and benchmarked them against six functionalities that I determined I would need to successfully implement my concept. These functionalities include: 1. Partner Research to identify and secure partners who would be interested in testing my concept with their customers 2. Supply Chain Assessment of the partnerâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s current transparency efforts, if any 3. Information Identification to determine which aspect of the partnerâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s supply chain to communicate to their customer 4. Medium Identification to determine the most efficient way to communicate the information identified in the previous functionality 5. Strategy Trial for an agreed period of time in collaboration with the partner 6. Impact Evaluation based on a pre-set criteria of success I situated each of the 12 competitors within the functionality that they perform best to compare their strengths and weaknesses, and to identify any functionalities without industry precedent that I could explore during the subsequent prototyping and testing phases of my project. Following is a full matrix of functionalities and corresponding competitors.

24

Competitive Analysis


Functionalities

Actions

1

Search for partners who are already invested in transparency or would like to start.

Set up prototype hypothesis

Audit organisation’s supply chain

Conduct market research and classify potential partners by need

Identify existing transparency efforts

Qualify potential partners Conduct outreach and biz dev

Challenges

Competitors and their impact in the space

2

Assess the organisation’s current supply chain transparency efforts.

It is difficult to justify the benefit of our service. If a potential partner is already responsible in their supply chain, they would not need our help. If they are not, why would they want to communicate this information to the consumer, at the risk of losing their valuable business?

Analyse partners’ needs or problems Verify problem-solution fit

There are already well established as well as emerging companies dealing with this, and they have a more extensive network within the industry to make this a success.

3

Work with the organisation to identify the aspect of their supply chain to communicate to the consumer.

4

Id m in co

Identify supply chain successes and failures

Understand and process

Determine what to communicate

Research ind consumer-fa

Assess what type of messaging resonates with the consumer

Craft the me

Verify product-market fit

Design the m

We are not experts in supply chain management, this is something we would ideally need to partner on with the supply chain manager within their organisation.

There are a l working in th media they c their informa targeted diff players, gov

Good Food 100 Rest.

TFM

MintScraps

NYS Grown

Mayor’s Office of Food Policy

Label Insigh

Zagat

Project Just

TEEB

Sourcemap Everlane

Strengths

Weaknesses

25

Objective standards

Industry sup

Industry support

Government

Government support

Open source

Successful collaborations

Real-time an

Trusted brand name(s)

Direct to cus

Not reaching new consumer segment

Another labe

Information is not consumer-facing

Hand-in-glov

Top-down effort(s)

Onus to find

Too exclusive

Information i

Competitive Analysis


organisation’s ply chain cy efforts.

pply chain

arency efforts

ds or problems

n fit

3

Work with the organisaFunctionalities tion to identify the aspect of their supply chain to communicate to the consumer.

Identify supply chain successes and Actions failures Determine what to communicate Assess what type of messaging resonates with the consumer Verify product-market fit

established as panies dealing e a more in the industry .

We are not experts in supply chain Challenges management, this is something we

would ideally need to partner on with the supply chain manager within their organisation.

Competitors and their impact in the space

Policy

4 1

Search Identifyfor thepartners most efficient who are medium already to convey investedthe in transparency information toorthe would like consumer. to start.

5 2

Implement strategy to Assess the the organisation’s test for supply an agreed period current chain of time. transparency efforts.

6 3

Work withthe theimpact. organisaEvaluate tion to identify the aspect of their supply chain to communicate to the consumer.

Verify the problem Identify supply chain successes and failures Verify the service/product Determine what to communicate Verify the business model Assess what type of messaging Plan next steps forconsumer strategy/growth resonates with the

Understand and process

Verify product-market fit

Design the m

There It would arebe already a challenge well established to determine as well whataswould emerging be thecompanies most effective dealing testwith ing ground this, and and they time have period. a more It would extensive depend on network the partner’s within the capacity industry and to resources. make this a success.

We It isare difficult not experts to determine in supply a benchchain management, mark for evaluation. this is Can something the inforwe would mationideally be actionable, need to partner or is it simply on with the ‘interesting supply chain to see’? manager If it is actionable, within their organisation. what are potential actions a consumer might take after gaining this knowledge?

There are a working in th media they c their informa targeted diff players, gov

TFM

Good Food 100 Rest.

DFTA

TFM

NYS Grown & Certified

MintScraps

NYS Grown

Label Insight

Mayor’s Office of Food Policy

Label Insigh

Project Just

Zagat

Project Just

Sourcemap

TEEB

Sourcemap

Understand available/emerging tech Set up prototype hypothesis and processes in food service Conduct market research and classify Researchpartners industryby conventions in potential need consumer-facing information design Qualify potential partners Craft the message/information Conduct outreach and biz dev Design the medium

Test the service/product Audit organisation’s supply chain

ItThere is difficult are ato lotjustify of organisations the benefit of our working service. in this If aspace, potential however, partner the is already media they responsible choose to in communicate their supply chain, their information they wouldare notvaried, need our andhelp. Iftargeted they aredifferently not, why would towards they industry want to players, communicate government, this information and consumers. to the consumer, at the risk of losing their valuable business?

Collect existing consumer feedback efforts Identify transparency Collect partner feedback Analyse partners’ needs or problems Verify problem-solution fit

Research in consumer-fa

Craft the me

Everlane

Everlane

Strengths

4

Id m in co

Industry sup

Industry support

Objective standards

Government support

Industry support

Government

Open source

Government support

Open source

ons

Real-time and visual

Successful collaborations

Real-time an

)

Direct to customer

Trusted brand name(s)

Direct to cus

Another label adding to the noise

Not reaching new consumer segment

Another labe

Hand-in-glove with Big Food brands

Information is not consumer-facing

Hand-in-glov

Onus to find info is on customer

Top-down effort(s)

Onus to find

Information is not consumer-facing

Too exclusive

Information i

umer segment

umer-facing

26

Weaknesses

Extensive bencharking principles

Competitive Analysis


2C. PROTOTYPE ROADMAP


PROTOTYPE ROADMAP

Here, I lay out the roadmap for each of the functionalities I identified during the competitive analysis phase. The roadmap includes a testing timeline, resources required at each stage, opportunities and risks at each stage, assessment and scheduled check-ins with partners, and exit strategies if planned testing activities are not successful.

Week 1

Week 2

Week 3

Week 4

Week 6

Week 5

Research upcoming dinner meetups Lower stake than a business Partner Insufficient events within testing duration Research 10 research hours Classify and contact meetup organisers 10 outreach hours Supply Chain Assessment Partner’s supply chain knowledge 10 audit hours Strategy TrialPrototype Identification Diners Partner’s 2-3 test hoursexpertise Industry research 5 research hours 5 design hours Design software Impact

1

If no willing partners, implement exit strategy #1

Organise own event

Collaborate with local cafe

Audit the dinner’s/event’s supply chain

Week 1

How much information does partner provide? Is the 4information trulyWeek transparent or marketing? Week Week 6 5

More feasible to track sourcing information 2 Week 2 Week 3 Identify partner’s current transparency efforts Implement test

Get diner feedback Identify medium/infor4 Get partner feedback mation to test

How realistic is the event setting? How constructive is feedback?

Assess what messaging Event logistics not conducive resonates to with fulldiners testing and feedback

How can partner help set up testing?

Research industry info design conventions Set metrics, syntheAudit available food Is information size3 feedback, and 5accurate? How objective are assessment metrics? service technologies assess impact Design info/medium

Evaluation 5 synthesis and assessment hours

Flexibility to choose information/medium Partner drives assessment

How can we align on what information/medium to communicate, without losing potential for complete transparency?

Tricky to find accurate quantitative info

Week 1

Week 2

Week 3

Week 4

Week 5

Week 6

Implement test Strategy Trial Diners Action 2-3 test hours

Get diner feedback Opportunity

Risk

Exit

feedback AssessmentGet partner Check-In Event logistics not conducive to full testing and feedback

Impact Evaluation 5 synthesis and assessment hours

Action

28

4

Set metrics, synthesize feedback, and 5 assess impact

Opportunity

Risk

Exit

Assessment

How realistic is the event setting? How constructive is feedback? How can partner help set up testing?

How objective are assessment metrics?

Check-In

Prototype Roadmap


EXIT STRATEGY #1: ORGANISE OWN EVENT

Schedule

3/20

3/22

3/25

3/30

3/31-4/2

Functionalities

Event Design

Prototype Design

Outreach

Testing

Evaluation

Actions

Identify info/medium prototype

Assess what info resonates with attendees

Set target audience

Implement test

Gather attendee feedback

Select info/ medium prototype

Research industry information design conventions Audit available food service technologies

Design communication

Identify metrics

Conduct outreach

Synthesize feedback

Confirm attendees

Assess impact

Design information/ medium

Resources

5 R&D hours

10 R&D hours

1 design hour

4-6 attendees

Food service industry expertise (external)

1 outreach hour

1-2 test hours

Attendee contact info

5 synthesis and assessment hours

Design software

29

Prototype Roadmap


EXIT STRATEGY #2: COLLABORATE WITH LOCAL CAFE

Schedule

3/31

4/5

4/7

4/12

Functionalities

Partner Outreach

Prototype Design

Testing

Evaluation

Actions

Approach cafe about testing on premises

Assess what info resonates w/ customers

Set up prototypes on premises

Synthesize customer responses

Select info/medium in collaboration w/ cafe

Research industry info design conventions

Observe/capture customer responses

Audit available food service technologies Design info/medium

Resources

2 hours

10 R&D hours

1 setup hour

Food service industry expertise (external)

Minimum 4 observation/ capture hours

2 synthesis hours

Design software

30

Prototype Roadmap


2D. PROTOTYPING


TESTING SCENARIO #1: SLOW GRAINS

Slow Grains was an event hosted by Slow Food NYC, a local chapter of the Slow Food organisation focused on promoting local and sustainable food. The event on April 9, 2017 explored the journey from field (wheat), to mill (flour), to bakery (bread) and how to communicate this to consumers. I collaborated closely with the event host, Amy Halloran, who provided me with deep domain-specific insight into the journey from field to bakery. The heaviest part of our collaboration was identifying what type of information to communicate and through what medium to communicate it to event attendees. We decided to subordinate the medium for this particular test and focused instead on testing what information resonates with attendees. FUNCTIONALITIES AND ACTIONS TESTED

1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6.

Partner Research: Outreach and business development Supply Chain Assessment: Partner needs analysis; problem-solution fit verification Information Identification: Information identification; messaging assessment Medium Identification: Message design; medium design Strategy Trial: Partner feedback Impact Evaluation: Problem verification; service/product verification; business model verification

The initial plan was to test which of the prototypes resonates most with attendees during the event, but we ran into a few logistical challenges. The space, for example, was extremely small and there was no dedicated space to display the prototypes. We considered passing them around with the bread basket during tastings, but that would not allow us to gather rich feedback on each of prototypes. Eventually, I was able to gather feedback from the baker of one of the breads, Amy herself, and some of my peers. Following are images of the six prototypes I tested and of the event on April 9, 2017.

Field

KNOW YOUR FLOUR

KNOW YOUR FLOUR to Bakery

Icons from Noun Project by: Hopkins

32

Catherine Please

to Mill

Icons from Noun Project by: Hopkins

Catherine Please

Prototyping


Maine

Finger Lakes, New York

New York

She Wolf Bakery

MICHE Made entirely with Farmer Ground Flour from organic grain grown in the Finger Lakes region

33

She Wolf Bakery

DURUM Made entirely with flours from Sicily, milled by Fillipo Drago

Sicily, Italy

Meyers Bageri

OLAND/RYE

Connecticut

Imported Nordic heirloom seedlings, grown in partnership with local farmers

Prototyping


EVALUATION

Key Learning #1: There need to be clearer parameters at the outset for the scope of collaboration with a partner, so that there are no discrepancies in expectations and results towards the end. Design & Strategy Implication #1: Define a very clear prototype hypothesis during the partner research phase, instead of trying to work it out in collaboration with the partner once the engagement has begun. Key Learning #2: While events seem like an ideal test setting at first, it is a challenge to seamlessly embed the prototypes into the flow of the event, and obtain authentic and realistic feedback. Design & Strategy Implication #2: Test in a realistic setting, such as a bakery or other such point of sale as much as possible, without putting the business owner at risk of losing business. Alternatively, run internal tests with business owners if testing with their customers is not acceptable to them.

34

Prototyping


TESTING SCENARIO #2: VOYAGER ESPRESSO

Voyager Espresso is an independent coffee shop in the Financial District of Manhattan, specialising in seasonal coffees from roasters around the US and abroad. They have a simple menu, and already strive to be transparent about the origins of and stories around their coffee beans. I’m familiar with the owners of this coffee shop since I visit it regularly. I noticed that they display labels cut out of coffee bean bags to show the origins of the coffee, and approached them about trying different types of labels to see if it affects customer reactions. After my experience with Slow Grains, I decided to make my own judgement call on what would be the most pertinent information for coffee drinkers. FUNCTIONALITIES AND ACTIONS TESTED

1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

Partner Research: Prototype hypothesis; outreach and business development Information Identification: Information identification; messaging assessment Medium Identification: Message design; medium design Strategy Trial: Partner feedback Impact Evaluation: Problem verification; service/product verification; business model verification

I tested my prototypes on site at the coffee shop for three days. The owners noticed that people were attracted to the visual nature of the labels, and remarked specifically that it was interesting to see the exact origin of the coffee beans. A few customers also commented on the display of the price La Cabra Coffee Roasters paid for each coffee batch, as opposed to the commodity market price (“Green Coffee Price” on the labels). Below are images of Voyager Espresso’s original coffee labels, the new playing card-sized prototypes for people to take with them, as well as larger cards for display on the counter.

35

Prototyping


BURUNDI

MUNYINYA

Long Miles Coffee, owned by Ben and Kristy Carlson, who are committed to improving the lives of more than 600 coffee farmers in Burundi.

Gooseberry, Jam, Rosehip

GREEN COFFEE PRICE $6.10/lb, 295% over commodity market price

HARVEST July 2016

ROAST DATE 20 March 2017

LA CABRA

COFFEE ROASTERS

BRAZIL

PINHEIRNHO Prunes, Raisin, Chocolate

PROCESS Washed

Lilica is part of the third generation to manage the Pinheirnho farm in the Carmo de Minas region, which he inherited from his father. They hand-pick mature, fully ripened cherries instead of stripping them off branches mechanically.

GREEN COFFEE PRICE $5.15/lb, 280% over commodity market price

HARVEST November 2015

ROAST DATE 20 March 2017 LA CABRA

COFFEE ROASTERS

PROCESS Natural

COSTA RICA

SANTA ROSA

Santa Rosa farm produces some of the finest coffee in Latin America. Coffee trees grow on steep slopes and benefit from abundant shade due to natural vegetation.

Apple, Caramel, Almonds

GREEN COFFEE PRICE $5.00/lb, 255% over commodity market price

HARVEST March 2016

ROAST DATE 20 March 2017 LA CABRA

COFFEE ROASTERS

PROCESS White Honey

36

Prototyping


BURUNDI

MUNYINYA Gooseberry, Jam, Rosehip

PRODUCER

HARVEST

Long Miles Coffee, owned by Ben and Kristy Carlson, who are committed to improving the lives of more than 600 coffee farmers in Burundi.

July 2016

GREEN COFFEE PRICE $6.10/lb, 295% over commodity market price

PROCESS

ROAST DATE 20 March 2017

Washed

LA CABRA

COFFEE ROASTERS

BRAZIL

PINHEIRNHO Prunes, Raisin, Chocolate

PRODUCER Lilica is part of the third generation to manage the Pinheirnho farm in the Carmo de Minas region, which he inherited from his father. They hand-pick mature, fully ripened cherries instead of stripping them off branches mechanically.

HARVEST November 2015

ROAST DATE 20 March 2017

PROCESS

GREEN COFFEE PRICE $5.15/lb, 280% over commodity market price

Natural

LA CABRA

COFFEE ROASTERS

COSTA RICA

SANTA ROSA Apple, Caramel, Almonds

PRODUCER

HARVEST

Santa Rosa farm produces some of the finest coffee in Latin America. Coffee trees grow on steep slopes and benefit from abundant shade due to natural vegetation.

March 2016

WE PAID

PROCESS

$5.00/lb, which is 255% over commodity market price

White Honey

ROAST DATE 20 March 2017

LA CABRA COFFEE ROASTERS

37

Prototyping


EVALUATION

Key Learning #1: There needs to be clearer metrics for impact measurement, and a specific method for observation and measurement. Design & Strategy Implication #1: Define a set of quantitative metrics, such as number of cards taken by customers, and a set of qualitative metrics, like types of questions asked by customers.

38

Prototyping


2E. FURTHER DEVELOPMENT


DEVELOPMENT MATRIX AND POTENTIAL DIRECTIONS

In this final phase of the project, the development matrix below helps assess each testing scenario against an opportunity-threat spectrum, and lists future directions for each functionality. In the case of Partner Research, for example, my benchmark lies closer to the lower end of the business risk spectrum. This means that as I continue to develop my project, I should seek out partners like the Slow Grains event organiser, who has less at stake if their customers donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t respond positively to transparency.

Functionalities

Partner Research

Supply Chain Assessment

Prototype Identification

Strategy Trial

Impact Evaluation

Benchmark

40

Opportunities

Low business risk

Accurate information

Transparency

Realistic setting

Objective

Testing Scenario 1: Change Food Dinner

Threats

Further Development/Needs

High business risk

Prioritise partners with higher risk (i.e. businesses, not events)

Incomplete information

Obtain info from independent auditors where available, not partners (e.g. Good Food 100)

Marketing

Establish an independent reputation to reduce reliance on partnersâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; reach

Unealistic setting

Design a standardised testing framework that can be adapted to each scenario

Industry-specific

Develop standardised criteria that can be adapted to each scenario

Testing Scenario 2: Slow Grains

Testing Scenario 3: Voyager Espresso

Further Development


REFERENCES 1

“World of Corn.” World of Corn 2016. Accessed October 2, 2016. http://www.worldofcorn.com/#corn-usage-by-segment.

2

Horrigan, Leo, Robert S. Lawrence, and Polly Walker. “How Sustainable Agriculture Can Address the Environmental and Human Health Harms of Industrial Agriculture.” Environmental Health Perspectives 110, no. 5 (May 2002): 445-56. Accessed September 7, 2016. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1240832/.

3

Aillery, Glenn Schaible Marcel. “USDA ERS - Irrigation & Water Use.” USDA ERS - Irrigation & Water Use. June 15, 2016. Accessed October 6, 2016. http://www.ers. usda.gov/topics/farm-practices-management/irrigation-water-use.aspx.

4

Nickerson, Cynthia, and Allison Borchers. “How Is Land in the United States Used? A Focus on Agricultural Land.” United States Department of Agriculture Economic Research Service. March 1, 2012. Accessed October 6, 2016. http://www.ers.usda.gov/amber-waves/2012-march/data-feature-how-is-land-used.aspx#.V_u-gKIrLZt.

5

Horrigan, Leo, Robert S. Lawrence, and Polly Walker. “How Sustainable Agriculture Can Address the Environmental and Human Health Harms of Industrial Agriculture.” Environmental Health Perspectives 110, no. 5 (May 2002): 445-56. Accessed September 7, 2016. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1240832/.

6

Howard, Philip H. “Visualizing Consolidation in the Global Seed Industry: 1996–2008.” Sustainability, December 8, 2009, 1266-287. Accessed October 6, 2016. doi:10.3390/su1041266.

7

Bunge, Jacob. “Bayer-Monsanto Deal Faces Heavy Regulatory Scrutiny.” The Wall Street Journal, September 14, 2016. Accessed October 18, 2016. http://www.wsj.com/ articles/bayer-monsanto-deal-faces-heavy-regulatory-scrutiny-1473855922?tesla=y.

8 9 10

Horrigan, Leo, Robert S. Lawrence, and Polly Walker. “How Sustainable Agriculture Can Address the Environmental and Human Health Harms of Industrial Agriculture.” Environmental Health Perspectives 110, no. 5 (May 2002): 445-56. Accessed September 7, 2016. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1240832/.

11

“Profiling Food Consumption in America.” In Agriculture Fact Book, 13-21. Accessed October 5, 2016. http://www.usda.gov/factbook/chapter2.pdf.

12

Horrigan, Leo, Robert S. Lawrence, and Polly Walker. “How Sustainable Agriculture Can Address the Environmental and Human Health Harms of Industrial Agriculture.” Environmental Health Perspectives 110, no. 5 (May 2002): 445-56. Accessed September 7, 2016. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1240832/.

13

Barber, Dan. The Third Plate: Field Notes on the Future of Food. New York: Penguin Press, 2014.

14

Smith, Lindsey P., Shu Wen Ng, and Barry M. Popkin. “Trends in US Home Food Preparation and Consumption: Analysis of National Nutrition Surveys and Time Use Studies from 1965–1966 to 2007–2008.” Nutrition Journal, 2013, 1-10. Accessed October 6, 2016. doi:10.1186/1475-2891-12-45.

15

Horrigan, Leo, Robert S. Lawrence, and Polly Walker. “How Sustainable Agriculture Can Address the Environmental and Human Health Harms of Industrial Agriculture.” Environmental Health Perspectives 110, no. 5 (May 2002): 445-56. Accessed September 7, 2016. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1240832/.

16 17

Bureau of Labor Statistics. United States Department of Labor. “CONSUMER EXPENDITURES--2015.” News release, August 30, 2016. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Accessed October 6, 2016. http://www.bls.gov/news.release/cesan.nr0.htm.

18

What’s Your Health Worth? Food & Health Survey 2015. Report. International Food Information Council Foundation, 2015.

19

Trends in U.S. Local and Regional Food Systems. Report. January 2015. Accessed October 6, 2016. http://www.ers.usda.gov/media/1763057/ap068.pdf.

41

References

Gayatri Mohan  

Reroot

Gayatri Mohan  

Reroot