Here’s a solution to a problem commonly seen at holiday parties, or any party for that matter where people share food. When you bring your homemade spinach dip or guacamole to a party, you must remember to take back your container (usually a “Flubberware” of plastic poison), or even worse, use a disposable container that ends up in landfill.
With edible containers, you don’t have to worry about polluting or retrieving your container after the party is over.
Diane Bisson, a Montreal design professor, has developed edible materials that can be moulded into containers. She insists that they are unlike the corn- or potato-based comestible plates that have been tested in Europe and taste like cardboard.
“I’ve spent a year testing about 400 different samples to come up with 40 recipes,” said Bisson, 49, who teaches at the Université de Montréal’s School of Industrial Design.
“The whole purpose of this is sustainable design,” she said. “It’s all about reducing disposable objects, the cardboard and plastic plates that are in every food court and every home. Objects like that get used once and then are thrown out. They’re filling the landfills. We have to find something better…
In 2011, she will work with scientists to refine her recipes for the market.
“We intend to have different flavours and tastes but they will be more neutral and the shapes will probably be closer to the shapes people know,” she said.
“But right now I’m being very creative so we can perhaps open new ways of handling the food, perceiving food and thinking about sustainability.”