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FROM THE PRODUCT CONCEPT TO REALITY. UPLIFTING KITCHENWARE INVENTION STORIES

Are you currently coming up with a new product idea, developing the product concept, or improving existing solutions? Whatever is the case for you, keep going until you realize it! Because your product might be the one that will solve the everyday and long-term needs of hundreds of people. To inspire and encourage your inventor’s genius, we have three amazing kitchenware invention stories for you.

Folks Kitchenware for the Blind

Folks is a line of kitchenware designed and developed for visually impaired and blind people. The product concept and design are based on the sensory feedback and tactile cues to enable the blind cook safely. The set includes four tools:

  • – A knife with a retractable guard which guides fingers during cutting and its trigger assists in cleaning.
  • – A chopping board with a side tray, which acts as an extension of the hand to gather and transfer ingredients efficiently, without spillage.
  • – A teaspoon with a buoy that floats when pouring fluid into the cup. The buoy informs the user of impending contact, thus minimizing risks of burns.  
  • – Stove rings whose role is to accentuate the burner’s boundaries and prevent accidents when using the stove.

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The kitchenware designer is young Kevin Chiam, a graduate of the National University of Singapore. The product concept came from his volunteering for Touch Homecare Community Services. “Among the individuals I have met, several are visually challenged because of medical conditions like diabetes. They all have an unusual and common feature on their hands and forearms: scabs and scars. Such marks are the result of unfortunate attempts at cooking and it is a common concern within the community,” Kevin said.  Prior to coming up with a new product idea, Kevin had an orientation session with “Dialogue in the Dark” where he experienced challenges that visually impaired people face daily.  That simulation encouraged him to look for the solutions in an attempt to empower the blind to cook and make the process safer.

A young designer was working closely with the blind conducting interviews and observations in their homes. The feedback from them using prototypes allowed Kevin to optimize the design of each tool. He was able to achieve greater efficiency and reduce the risks of accidents. Though Folks is not on the market yet, it has already received the James Dyson Award in 2018 and first place at the 2019 Student Design Competition at Chicago’s International Home + Housewares Show.

ChopBox

ChopBox is a smart cutting board. It features five kitchen gadgets in one:

  • – A dual cutting board
  • – Weighing scales
  • – Digital timer
  • – Knife sharpener
  • – UVC light for sterilization.

The product concept is based on keeping the preparation area germ-free, clean, and your food healthy. For that reason, there is a built-in 254 nm UVC light. Within a minute it sanitizes 3 knives and two boards at the same time.

The larger and smaller boards allow the cook to switch from one type of produce to another without cross-contamination. The board is made of organic bamboo and is waterproof.

The scales on the left side of the board can weigh up to 6.6 pounds in grams, kilograms, ounces, and pounds. The digital timer is built into the board as well. You can set it for up to 10 hours unlike common kitchen timers. There are two knife sharpeners on the side of the board. By choosing between ceramic or diamond stone, you can select the level of sharpness. For more features visit Indiegogo.com

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The ChopBox was designed and developed by The Yes Company. But the idea and the product concept sparked from their designer, who is also a skilled home chef. Overtime, he encountered the issue and inconvenience of buying and storing too many kitchen gadgets. Also, when he was coming up with a new product idea, he read some medical researches and studies on germs and bacteria. He became aware of how many of them were actually on the cutting boards, knives, and other kitchen appliances.

“When sharing his story, our team went into overdrive to find a solution. If he was having these problems, there was no doubt in our minds that other home cooks were experiencing the same.

So, we set out to solve every single problem he presented us with and more. In addition to solving common kitchen issues, we at The Yes Company decided to take it even further and create a smart kitchen appliance out of natural, organic materials – good for you, good for the planet, beautiful design.”

Equilibric Multifunctional Balance Bowl

The product concept of Equilibric was well-thought for ergonomics and usability. This gadget is a combination of:

  • – Colander
  • – Defrosting bowl
  • – And a serving dish.

As a colander, it reduces water consumption used for washing and rinsing by 60%. Also, its balanced design doesn’t allow for clean fruits, berries, vegetables, or grains to fall out of the bowl into the sink. There is no need for extra dishes after washing. Just take the colander off, and you got the serving dish. As a defrosting bowl, the Equilibric takes away the problem of sudden puddles and spillage, and its washing machine motion helps remove 90% of the dirt and bacteria from your foods.  

Ann and Tim, individual entrepreneurs and inventors, and also husband and wife, brought Equilibric from the product concept to reality. Ann is a designer and Tom is an engineer. The couple loves homemade food, so they cook a lot and try to make the process easier. 

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This is where the idea to improve common colander design came from. Ann bought lots of colanders available in stores, and “inspired by design of various items and inventions, from spoons to airplanes,” she began sketching. Tim worked on prototypes, and then they were ready for manufacturing.

“The most problematic part was talking to various China-based factories. We were sending the design and info over, but struggled with communication problems. But ultimately, we found a manufacturer and a manager that helped us on this stage after it had stretched on for a while,” explained Ann. The product is now on the market, but the duo didn’t stop there. They are currently coming up with a new product idea and creating a brand of smart kitchen gadgets.

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