The food project was an exploration into how to teach children about carbon emissions. Carbon emissions are invisible so they aren’t easy to relate to. The aim of the project was to come up with a tangible way to express data that makes the topic more graspable. This work was shown at the On Our Doorsteps – Design Activism exhibition at 100% Design during The London Design Festival.
The result was a selection of different foods modelled from fibreglass and jesmonite. Each model was weighted differently; the heavier it was the greater the embedded carbon emission. In calculating the weight the statistics took into consideration transport, growing efficiency, livestock, use of fertilisers and other factors.
A lot of people found the weights totally unexpected. Using weight as a tool for comparative data worked well, its invisibility means you have to engage with each item individually in order to build up a full picture. This seems to build a stronger and more lasting understanding for children than using written statistics or graphs.