Product, Service & Design Innovation

The latest products, services, design approaches and business models that are helping organizations of all sizes deliver on their sustainability ambitions and establish a new business as usual.

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First Things First: 4 Ways to Unearth Ideas for Sustainable Innovation

Most Sustainable Brands readers will know that 22nd April is Earth Day, but did you also know that the 21st is World Creativity and Innovation Day? I’ve always been amazed at how little the sustainability community focuses on idea generation and creativity.

Trending: More Startups Revolutionizing the Food Industry

Everyone’s gotta eat – and it makes for a big industry. Globally, food and agriculture is a $7.8 trillion industry. Its also growing (pun intended): global investments in the food and agriculture sector have grown three-fold since 2004 and, according to McKinsey, on average have demonstrated higher returns to shareholders than other sectors. In the US, agriculture, food and related industries generated 5.5% of the country’s GDP at $992 billion, $137 billion of that coming directly from US farms.

3M Awards NDSU Engineering Students Top Prize in Disruptive Design Challenge

A team of students from North Dakota State University took the top prize last week at 3M’s Disruptive Design Challenge in St. Paul, Minnesota.

Fast Co's World-Changing Ideas Winners Build Empathy, EVs; Repurpose Guns, Flowers

For the second year, Fast Company is celebrating businesses, policies, and nonprofits that are poised help shift society to a more sustainable and more equitable future with its World Changing Ideas Awards. From melted down guns to nitrogen-producing microbes, there’s quite a bit of variety among 2018’s twelve winners.

Trending: New Sustainable Fashion Collections, Connections, CEO Agenda

Apparel collections that are less harmful to the environment are on the horizon from G-Star RAW and H&M. Meanwhile, a small Boston-based footwear company is making it easier for customers to connect with their craftsmen, and the non-profit Global Fashion Agenda (GFA) recommended sustainability priorities for senior managers in the fashion world in its first ‘CEO Agenda’ report.

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Problem-Solvers Invited to Ideate, Prototype Blockchain Solutions for Social Good

Does cryptography hold the key to solving global social and environmental challenges? It certainly holds promise for some. Blockchain has become a hot topic recently, thanks to its variety of potential applications across supply chains, marketing, and more.

Trending: Startups Want to Redesign the Way We Eat Veg

With the global population predicted to reach nine billion by 2050 and the realities of climate change quickly unfolding, the pressure is on to find new solutions that allow us to meet growing demand while reducing environmental impacts. Food companies and government have an important role in initiating change, but startups are quickly emerging as the champions of tomorrow’s food system.

AB InBev Brews Up New Sustainability Goals, Innovation Accelerator to Tackle Global Challenges

Having achieved all of its previous sustainability goals over the past decade, Anheuser-Busch InBev (AB InBev) is hitting refresh on its sustainability goals, announcing a new set of 2025 targets for smart agriculture, water stewardship, circular packaging and climate action.

Trending: Climate-Smart Street Furniture, Infrastructure Helping Future-Fit Cities of Tomorrow

To usher cities towards a carbon-neutral future, local governments around the globe are hedging their bets on diesel and petrol vehicles bans. But eliminating fossil fueled mobility isn’t the only way to reduce emissions. Smart street furniture and innovative urban infrastructure are fast emerging as viable — and impactful — solutions to the CO2 problem.

Enel Report Highlights 100 Innovators Shaping Italy’s Circular Economy

Italy is quickly establishing itself as a force to be reckoned with in the circular economy, as evidenced by a new report from Enel, an Italian multinational manufacturer and distributor of electricity and gas.

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Fashion for Good Unveils 15 Startups Future-Fitting Fashion Industry

The Fashion for Good-Plug and Play Accelerator has revealed the names of the 15 startups selected to participate in its third edition, which kicks off today.

Trending: New Technologies, Recycling Schemes, Materials Edge Fashion Industry Closer to Circularity

The New Textiles Economy continues to bloom as key players in the apparel and textile industries take action to shift towards a more sustainable model.

IKEA Test Kitchen Creating Neatballs, Bug Burgers, More ‘Fast Food of the Future’

IKEA’s test kitchen, SPACE10, has been developing dishes with alternative ingredients such as insects, algae, and lab-grown meat. The chef-in-residence and their team reimagined several of IKEA’s classic menu items into healthier, more sustainable, yet still delicious dishes. They may not be available at IKEA retailers anytime soon, but they may be the fast food of the future!

H&M Names 5 Sustainable Startups That Could Change the Face of Fashion

Fast fashion giant H&M has named the five winners of its latest Global Change Award, who are harnessing the power of technology to rein in the fashion industry’s extensive environmental and social impacts. This year’s winners include dissolvable thread, sustainable algae-based dye and clothes made from mushroom roots.

Chobani Incubator Unveils Names of Next 9 Startups Poised to Disrupt Food Industry

Yogurt manufacturer Chobani has unveiled the nine food startups participating in its third Chobani Incubator. The Spring 2018 class is comprised of companies disrupting and improving high-potential food categories in the US, from new and innovative snack products to healthier energy drinks and nutritious foods that can help kids learn to love veggies.

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Trending: Urban Farming, Insects Emerging as Cornerstones of Sustainable Food Future

With the world population projected to reach 10 billion by 2050, 70 percent more food will be needed, making sustainable food and agricultural solutions an imperative. Urban farming and alternative proteins are emerging as viable and intelligent approaches to meet growing nutritional demands with minimal environmental impacts.

Plastic Scan Ushers in New Era for Supply Chain Transparency

A new online tool developed by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) and social enterprise Searious Business could help stem the massive tide of microplastics entering the world’s oceans each year. The tool, dubbed Plastic Scan, allows businesses to measure their plastic emissions and provides recommendations on how to reduce impact across the textile supply chain.

L’Oréal Renewable Natural Gas Project Poised to Set New Industry Standard

Guided by its Sharing Beauty with All global sustainability program, beauty giant L’Oréal has revealed plans to achieve carbon neutrality by 2019 for all 21 of its US manufacturing and distribution facilities.

Blockchain Will Revolutionize Marketing — Are You Prepared?

"We want to create "radical impact", as we like to call it: create access to better quality coffee than the one sold by the leading multinationals and make sure that the people growing our coffee make a better living by bringing value-adding activities back to their countries. But how do we measure and show what we actually do with Moyee?” said Guido van Staveren van Dijk, CEO of Moyee Coffee, describing one of the key challenges his company is facing.

Drone Technology Making Forestry Faster, Safer, More Efficient

Imagine a drone, hovering high above your home. A package is released from its clutches and gently drifts to the ground, aided by a parachute. And just like that, the package you ordered only 30 minutes ago is delivered to your yard. The scenario sounds like something from a science fiction movie, but recently, e-commerce giant Amazon was granted a U.S. patent for this innovation.

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