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Fruit Saver

Fruit Saver

Design research, user experience design, technology development and product modeling by:

Michael Raineri


Design research, user experience design and visual design by:

Karina Davila

 

The significant amount of food waste created in the United States puts a huge burden on the environment and costs consumers and the food industry a lot of money. Two key factors in the creation of food waste is confusion surrounding shelf life and forgetfulness about food with finite shelf life.

To address these two factors, for this project, we turned our sights to produce— specifically fruit—which is a frequent culprit of these issues. Produce tends to have no official labeling as to when it will spoil and consumers frequently forget about produce or overestimate its shelf life leading to uneaten food waste.

When fruits begin to ripen, they release a gas called Ethylene. Using new chip sticker sensors, which have been developed to measure these gases without the price tag, we wanted to focus on how they can be used in the household setting.

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When initially thinking about the user journey, we thought about how the user would throw away perfectly good food. They could be confused about sell by dates, and then just throw it away because they wouldn’t know whether something was good or not. However, as we shifted to fruits specifically, we thought more about why someone’s fruit would go bad.

Our new user journey became: As a household member, I want to remember to eat my fruits so that I don’t have to throw them away when they spoil and I forget to eat them.

To alleviate this consumer food waste and to save consumers money, we created Fruit Saver. Fruit Saver allows you to measure the freshness of your fruit and set a reminder so that you won’t forget to eat your fruit.

As the image displays below, you first would use the sensor to poke your fruit (boop!). Once the sensor picks up the ethylene level in your produce, it will let you know how ripe it is and send that information to your phone and open the Fruit Saver app. 
 

When thinking about how the app could work with the sensor, we prototyped with Arduino technology. We also created multiple wireframes to prototype and test our app with potential users. 

Once the app opens, it will register the fruits approximate expiration date and prompt you to set a reminder so you don't forget to eat your fruit. Fruit Saver also offers tips if you want to know the best way to keep your fruits fresh, and recipes so you can figure out what to do with your fruit if you want to get creative. If you would like to see a walkthrough click the image below.