UDK Berlin graduate Kimia Amir-Moazami presented her sustainable project, Vorkorster, at antenna 2021. The Vorkoster is a lid that makes the expiry of food visible. In its centre is a pH-sensitive foil that reacts to the spoilage of protein-containing foods by changing colour. It is an object that reminds us in an unobtrusive and analogue way to consume food before it is too late.
“The Vorkoster is intended to offer an alternative to the standardised expiry date and to provide assistance for an unpackaged future,” says Amir-Moazami. “Cooling interruptions during the transport and production of food change the shelf life of the products. Fresh food reacts to external influences and therefore cannot be standardised exactly. Expiry dates do not take these differences into account, they contain a safety buffer that cannot be used by consumers. The special advantage of pH functionality is the direct reaction to the food. It does not matter how and where the product was bought. Through the Vorkoster, it shows when it is about to expire and becomes independent of the packaging.”
Vorkoster also serves as a reminder to consume the perishable food in our fridge. It is a tool that questions the way we treat food and points out its value. It is meant to empower consumers to become independent of static guidelines and to question existing norms.
According to the WWF study "Das große Wegschmeißen" ("The Big Throwaway"), more than 18 million tonnes of food end up in the waste bin in Germany every year. This corresponds to almost one third of the current food consumption of 54.5 million tonnes. Most of this food waste could already be avoided today and amounts to around 10 million tonnes. This means that 313 kilograms of edible food are thrown away every second.
“It is clear that something has to change fundamentally and structurally, yet measures such as the mindful handling of food and the support of concepts such as unpackaged shops or food rescue are important steps in the right direction. With my Vorkoster design, I want to start where the best-before date fails, and motivate people to rethink,” states Amir-Moazami. The project responds to the UN’s Sustainable Development (SDG) Goal 2: Zero Hunger.
The designer successfully completed her studies in product and process design at the Berlin University of the Arts and has worked as a tutor in various project groups. During a semester abroad at the Design Academy Eindhoven, Amir-Moazami was able to deepen her knowledge of design research and experimental design approaches.
She currently works as a product and UX designer and co-leads the Design Semester at Heinz Berggruen Gymnasium with designer Martha Schwindling. Amir-Moazami is particularly interested in interdisciplinary projects with a focus on design research and enjoys exploring new topics.