Class of 2021
28 / London, UK
From Vilnius, Lithuania
The Lithuanian industrial designer using temperature technology to reconfigure food waste
An industrial designer with a conscience, Solveiga Pakštaitė created Mimica Touch, a temperature-sensitive indicator that tells consumers when their food has actually spoiled, rather than relying on often-misleading expiry dates. After growing up in Lithuania and Norway, Solveiga moved to the UK and got the idea for Mimica Touch while studying at university. She was working on a project about visually impaired people in public transportation and found that there were many devices that helped people with everyday tasks, but nothing that allowed them to discern when their food had gone bad.
Made by her company Mimica Lab, Mimica Touch is a new kind of packaging that reacts with bumps to signal when a food product has gone off. It uses a vegan gel that decomposes at the same rate as meat products and turns to liquid when no longer fit for consumption. While Solveiga’s invention was originally aimed at the visually impaired, it is useful for everyone, since it is far more accurate than the flawed fixed-date system, which hasn’t changed since its introduction in the 1970s. The company’s ultimate goal is to radically reduce unnecessary waste and become the new standard for freshness. An avid learner who is always tuned into a podcast or taking a course, Solveiga has applied her creative mind to helping to fix one of the world’s greatest problems: food waste.
“People imagine that as soon as the clock strikes midnight, food turns to poison. It’s crazy to think that people are going hungry yet so much good food is going to waste.” – Solveiga Pakštaitė
Images: Chet Strange, On Dyson, Ben Broomfield