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E-cool Butter Dispenser

Spreading butter solution for multi-user scenarios: eliminate small plastic packaging, reduce food waste, ensure food safety.

Photo of Sandra null
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The E-cool butter dispenser body is a horizontal parallelepiped made of 4 main components:

1. External shell in bamboo, with proper finger grips on the top

2. Stainless steel push piston with curved edge at the bottom

3. Small cutter in stainless steel with curved edge at the bottom

4. Flip-open slice tray in stainless steel

When the cutter and/or the flip-open tray are closed, butter freshness is kept safe and can be easily stored in the fridge.

The product can be easily dissembled and the stainless steel components (the only ones in contact with the butter) are dishwasher safe.

Where are you / your team located?

Currently in South Africa, soon in the US

How does this Idea redesign unrecyclable small format plastic items that often end up as waste?

The use of this product would completely prevent any use of small format plastic packaging for butter, by offering a user friendly tool that would also drastically reduce food waste, while preserving food safety (keep the cold in cold chain; avoid food contact) and making the storage easier.

Which use cases does your Idea apply to?

CASE 2: Bottle caps and tear-offs (Carmen: Hotel owner in Mexico City)

In what geographical context or area does your Idea plan to operate / solve?

It could be applicable in any restaurant, household, canteen, where a multipurpose solution is needed to ensure: drastic reduction of food waste, zero (contaminated) plastic waste, food safety and easy storage.

How do you envision scaling up your Idea?

Sustainability, customer experience, quality and durability are key factors for the product design. Combining those aspects with a competitive price can be a challenge that should be addressed in the research, prototyping and piloting phases. An effective business plan and marketing strategy on the short and long-term benefits of this product (in terms of operating costs, sustainability and food safety) would facilitate its diffusion.

At what stage of development is your Idea?

  • Research & Early Testing: You are exploring an idea, gathering inspiration and information needed to test it with real users.

Please describe how becoming a Top Idea and working with the Think Beyond Plastics Accelerator Program will help to accelerate your solution.

The Think Beyond Plastics Accelerator Program would give me the unique opportunity to refine and develop my idea through the right tools and expertise. My first goal is to prototype this product idea and launch a pilot phase in order to adjust the product features to the customer experience. The final goal would be the full-scale roll out and distribution, supported by an adequate business plan and marketing strategy.

Please describe from where your Idea emerged

Since my professional experience in the bio waste sector, I have always been concerned about the environmental impact of food contaminated packaging within the waste management system, especially for non-recyclable small-format packaging. Hence, during several buffets and restaurants catering experiences I have often been questioning whether more sustainable options could be explored to reduce or eliminate this problem, while ensuring food safety and hygiene for the final consumer.

Tell us about your work experience

I have worked in the bio-waste management and bio plastic sectors, using the Life Cycle Assessment approach. Now taking my first steps in circular design, despite it being a long-time hidden passion.


Join the conversation:

Photo of Kate Rushton

Hi Sandra!

Interesting idea!

Are you able to post a link to an image that illustrates how this would look and function?

Photo of Sandra null

Hi Kate, thanks for your feedback!
I will send it asap.

Photo of OpenIDEO

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