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Yo-man

American chocolate brand Hershey is launching a new candy brand in China called Lancaster – Yo-man in Chinese – to target one of the world’s fastest-growing candy markets.

Hershey has crafted three flavours specifically for Chinese consumers using a milk-condensing process called nai bei. The candy will be distributed in the Chinese cities of Wuhan, Hangzhou and Chengdu in June 2013. The brand expects to expand throughout China later in the year.

This is the first time Hershey has launched a new brand outside the US. Hershey hopes to gain a share of China’s milk candy confectionary market, which is estimated to be worth 7.5bn yuan ($1.2bn), accounting for one quarter of the total candy market.

“Consumers in China love high-quality, delicious candy that reflects care and craftsmanship and gives them a rich taste experience that is distinct and premium,” said Jane Xu, Vice President and General Manager of Greater China for The Hershey Company. “Lancaster Nai Bei candy provides consumers with a milk candy experience that is unlike any other product available in the China market.”

(Source: confectionarynews.com)

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Balancing Act

Forgetting to water your plants could be a thing of the past thanks to Japanese designer Risako Matsumoto. His latest project Water Balance consists of a piece of wood with a glass vial on one side and a sliding weight on the other. The design maintains perfect balance until the plant is dry, signaling to the owner that it’s time to top up the water.

(Source: psfk.com)

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Milan 2013: Food Storage

Food Storage by Italian creative design studio Friday Project is designed to help us eat more healthily.

Based on the principles of the food guide pyramid, the storage system dedicates more space to what we should eat more of. The unit provides space for cereals, pasta and bread, a drawer for vegetables that need to be kept in darkness and a terracotta box to conserve products out of the refrigerator.

According to the studio, Food Storage provides “an educational system for our diet,” by displaying the food we have in our homes and encouraging us to combine them in a more nutritious way.

(Source: fridayproject.it)

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The Mataerial Printer

Researchers Saša Jokić and Petr Vovikov from Barcelona’s Institute for Advanced Architecture of Catalonia (IAAC) have created a gravity-defying 3D printer.

The Mataerial printer uses plastic made from thermosetting polymers, which solidify instantly, allowing it to draw freeform shapes in the air extending from any surface. The process, which the designers call “anti-gravity object modelling”, is a form of extrusion that instantly creates chunky three-dimensional rods, rather than slowly building up two-dimensional layers like a standard 3D printer. Users can customise the colour of the plastic and the width of the tube to their exact specifications.

(Source: dezeen.com)

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Ideo’s Future Packaging Concepts

International design firm and innovation consultancy IDEO has launched a collection of future-facing packaging concepts that explore how packaging design can assume a more guiding role in a product’s final consumption.

Published under Designs On – IDEO’s internal innovation platform that presents provocations around pertinent topics, such as food and global warming – the pamphlet presents 18 unexpected packaging designs for products, tools, scents and environments.

Taking inspiration from the billions of discarded cigarette butts that litter the UK’s streets, Ben Forman designed Cigg Seed – a biodegradable cigarette butt that’s embedded with wildflower seeds, which sprout and blossom into wildflower meadows when flicked and discarded. Chopsticks by Gregory Perez and Guoning Hu highlights the resources expended to manufacture disposable wooden chopsticks – housing the chopsticks inside a twig provides an inherent reminder of their environmental impact. Expired by the designers Kuen Chang and Jin Ko repackages medication in bottles that ‘ripen’ with brown spots, like a banana, to indicate the pill’s freshness.

For more innovative packaging concepts, see Ecologically Wrapped and The Disappearing Package

(Source: designs-on.com)

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Edios: Enhancing the Senses

A group of students at London’s Royal College of Art have designed two experimental masks that allow wearers to selectively enhance their hearing and vision. The Eidos masks are designed to enhance sensory perception by tuning in to selective sights and sounds around the wearer and applying effects to amplify particular senses.

The Eidos Vision mask lets wearers control the way they see motion. The device uses a head-mounted camera, which transmits imagery to a computer to apply effects before sending it back for the viewer to watch in real time.

Eidos Audio allows wearers to hear sounds more selectively, using a directional microphone and audio processors to neutralise background noise. The sound is transmitted straight to the inner ear via bone vibrations.

(Source: dezeen.com)

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The Glowing Plant Project

A group of students from California-based institutions Stanford University and Singularity University are using synthetic biology to design glow-in-the-dark plants, which they hope will be the first step in using plants to replace conventional streetlights.

The students will use software from Genome Compiler – a programme for designing DNA code – to inject bioluminescent genes into Arabidopsis plants (a member of the mustard family). Inspired by fireflies and luminescence in aquatic creatures, the team hopes to develop a strand of plants as the first step towards creating a natural, sustainable light source.

The project needs $65,000 in funding from Kickstarter donations to purchase and print the genes identified on the Genome Compiler. In return, backers are offered kits to create their own glowing plant at home.

(Source: kickstarter.com)

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Austerity

In response to growing fears surrounding global climate change, designers are exploring the roles that design could play in the apocalyptic landscape of the future. Design studio Lanzavecchia + Wai has created a comestible furniture collection that’s designed to be consumed in times of crisis.

The four conceptual objects use basic nutrients – such as carbohydrates, proteins, sugar and chocolate – as food reserves. These nutrients enhance the finish of the objects and cover the collection’s core metal structures. Over time the organic elements erode, which exposes the elemental nature of the piece and encourages the user to embrace a new era of austerity.

The fundamental structure of the Chocolate Chair is an iron stool, which is embellished with white chocolate legs and backrest. Hard Candy Table boast three iron legs and a tabletop made from shocking pink sugar.

(Source: lanzavecchia-wai.com)

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Ecologically Wrapped

Swedish research company Innventia and designers Anna Glansén and Hanna Billqvist from design agency Tomorrow Machine have created Sustainable Expanding Bowl – a re-usable food packaging that is completely sustainable.

The packaging – created to hold freeze-dried food – instantly expands into a serving bowl when hot water is added. The concept comes in a compressed state, which saves on space and cost, and is made from a bio-based and biodegradable material.

Responding to the strain on the world’s natural resources and the harmful impact of manufacturing, designers are exploring environmentally friendly materials that can be recycled or composted. With every piece of plastic ever made still with us, we need ecological alternatives.

(Source: lsnglobal.com)

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Perfumery Tools

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Industrial designer Andrea Strata has created a set of instruments to aid the selling of perfumes.

Perfumery Tools includes Le Petit Orgue, which allows customers to smell essential oils commonly used in fragrances to see which scent they like the most. Les Plis is a cone-shaped sampling strip that’s designed to fit around the nose, and Les Cloches is a glass concave that allows the consumer to smell a silk square sprayed with the perfume. “The base, the silk square and even the glass can be customised to communicate the essence of the brand,” says Strata.

L’Helice is a handheld fan designed to help customers experience what people around them will smell when wearing the perfume. The last tool is called Le Flaire – a ceramic tool that enables users to discover what the perfume smells like on the skin.

Strata’s project turns the act of selling perfume into a poetic and engaging experience for the user. See Scent-ogaphy by Amy Radcliffe, which also aims to redefine how consumers interact with smell on a daily basis.

(Source: andreastrata.com)

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