The challenge

The brief challenged the design team to seek and identify areas that held opportunity for design intervention within the context of “safety” (preferably 
in the social problem space). The team were then tasked to respond to a chosen social problem with a design solution that demonstrated and utilised 
design thinking, research and traditional design practices.  

After exploring a range of “potential” problem spaces/landscapes, the team discovered an opportunity for an intervention that addressed a problem
that laid at the intersection of dietary related sicknesses/disease and personal income/finance.

With poor nutrition choices (often due to a lack of nutrition knowledge, education and financial constraints) being one of the key causes of diet related sicknesses in impoverished communities (i.e heart disease, obesity and high blood pressure), the team sought to explore the idea of a dedicated station/space within the supermarket vicinity that could help provide support/assistance to those with a lack of nutrition knowledge/income.

Dealing specifically with those from more disadvantaged backgrounds, the idea of a solution that could calculate the best nutrition choices based
on biometric information unique to the user laid the premise for a solution to a problem that could further be researched, explored and developed. 

After spending a considerable amount of time being submerged in the problem space (experiencing local supermarkets, shops and the daily lives of the
target audience) the team were able to gather and sort key insights derived from both qualitative and quantitative research methods. Key insights were quickly grouped and categorised in order of importance to the user group, which lead to a creative exploration phase that lead to a variety of potential solutions. Due to the large volume of solutions generated, the team quickly prototyped ideas in order to converge toward a solution. This process ranged from testing anything between practical/commercially viable solutions all the way to future focused solutions that lay 10-20 years ahead.

Due to intellectual property sensitivity as well as the nature of the research, creative exploration and development process, the following is an extract
that illustrates some of the key features/territories explored during the manifestation of the final product.


The Solution

With the help of well renowned IDEO empathy research and design strategy tools (i.e “camera journals” and “day in the life of’s”), it had come as no
surprise that smart devices in the form of ipads and iphones were readily accessible in many of New Zealand's “vulnerable/impoverished” house holds
(with the exception of readily available access to the internet). This insight lead to the graduation towards a digitally focused solution in the form of
a mobile Application which merely exploited the fact that the target audience had access to smart devices/digital  tools.  

The design solution is expressed as an Application named Nu-trolley (short for Nutrition trolley), which virtually assists consumers in the food purchasing process, either within or outside the super market environment (online). The Application helps consumers make more informed nutrition choices with regard to the unique lifestyle/nutrition needs of them/their family members. The Application achieves this by reinterpreting conventional nutrition info (labels) into
a more engaging and simplistic form of communication, that users can understand over a longer period of time.

This is achieved with users signing up by completing a Biometric, BMI (Body Mass Index) and hybrid lifestyle questionnaire for themselves/the people
they’re shopping for in which the application uses the info as a metric to help define purchasing choices that benefit the unique needs of users. Users are
then encouraged to browse the isles by scanning their desired consumer product of choice, in which the App then reinterprets into a “revised”  food pyramid model that is segmented into 3 key areas (Grains, Fruits/Veggies and Dairy/Meats). The goal is for all three segments of the pyramid to be completed and highlighted in green, indicating that the purchasing choices made for the consumers unique lifestyle and dietary requirements have been met for the day, week or month.

1. The core offering of an interactive food pyramid that reinterprets and summarises
standardised nutrition info in a way thats easier for users to understand (allowing for efficient
decision making in the supermarket environment). The pyramid also has the ability to consider
a range of different lifestyles and dietary requirements that span multiple users/consumers
across a multiple lengths of time





2. A Meal planning and scheduling feature that automatically consolidates all food
purchases/entries made with the App which then recommends a range of healthy meals
to cook for the estimated consumption period. This function also takes into consideration
the best time of day to consume the recommended meal




3. A Meal comparison feature compares meals/ingredients empowering
users to make more informed decisions in regards to dietary/energy needs.

4. A Meal preparation/recipe
feature that (based on data gathered from
the Meal planning and scheduling feature) gives users easy to follow/step
by step instructions on how to cook their saved/scheduled meals


5. A Nutrition coaching
feature geared specifically towards users who suffer from
nutrition related diseases or those who are sports orientated, are granted paid access
to professional nutritionists 



Other features also include (but are not limited to):  

6. A Food sourcing feature that allows users to make more ethically informed decisions when it comes to the welfare of the food they choose to consume. This allows users to take a look into the sourcing, production and manufacturing conditions that their food are being subjected to

7. A Way finding feature that allows users to find the exact location of the products they’re looking for with in their supermarket of choice. This feature also formulates the most efficient route for product collection and serves as a great feature for those shopping away from the supermarket, who are primarily concerned about getting their shopping done as quickly as possible 

8. A Weekly/monthly nutrition tracking and reporting feature

9. A Shopping list feature that allows users to quickly add needed/desired items to their shopping list. This also features stock quantity and live pricing info

10. A Smart cart/Express checkout feature that allows for instant checkout with the help of integrated trolley sensors that tally up the combined weight
of the shopping session, allowing for immediate payment/checkout.
 
Nu Trolley (Nutrition Trolley) - Product Design
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Nu Trolley (Nutrition Trolley) - Product Design

The challenge The brief challenged the design team to seek and identify areas that held opportunity for design intervention within the context o Read More
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