“Considering not only the food but also the space in which it is consumed.”
Jashan Sippy is an architect and food-lover from Mumbai, India. He spent his early life travelling around the globe licking buildings to experience them holistically. His thesis “Gastronomy & Architecture: Multisensory Experiences” explored the cross between the two artistic disciplines. Jashan moved to San Francisco, CA to pursue an M.Sc. in International Business and has designed various spaces for food – from production, to consumption and waste, including grocery stores, restaurants and hotels. He has conducted innovation workshops in design and hospitality institutes and has curated multiple eating experiences with his multidisciplinary design studio Sugar & SPACE.
As our Food and Space Correspondent, what do you hope to be corresponding on?
I will focus on exploring innovative spaces that designers have come up with for consumers to interact with food. I will be on the look out for habitable food and edible architecture, and critique these experiences. I believe that by considering not only the food but also the space in which it is consumed, designers can create holistic, unforgettable, multi-sensory experiences for consumers: the inner (food in the belly) and outer (space all around) body experience.
What went wrong but taught you a lot in the realm of food and design?
Coming from a critical thinking background and designing eating experiences, it is very easy to be mistaken as “just an event planner”. While the rigor, organizational and management skills required to execute successful events is commendable, clients may not always consume our design the way we intend them to. In my opinion it is very important to not get carried away – while our work defines us, it is up to us to probe the path we are following and the direction we aim to go.
Mint Chocolate Chip, San Francisco, CA. Aug 2018. For Sugar and Space.
Edible Walkthrough, Mumbai, India. April 2017. Part of Center for Artisanal Gastronomy, Academy of Architecture
What position in the food and design field is underexposed?
The value that food designers could bring to other industries is still to be realized, as designers are incredibly valuable to every element along the food supply chain – from production, processing, handling, packaging, transport, storage, display, sale, delivery, consumption, disposal, waste management, to anything in between. Here are a few fields in which designers could make a big impact:
Hospitality – Food designers can help bring about breakthroughs in sustainability, environment and help reduce the carbon footprint in big hotels, restaurant chains, etc. By understanding the detailed operations and critically intervening, food designers will make a big difference in the evolution of intelligent hospitality.
Big Food Brands – Corporations like PepsiCo, Nestle, etc. would benefit manifold with food designers on their team. By understanding the detailed operations and critically intervening, food designers can assist bringing forth improvements in sustainability and environmental issues and help reduce the carbon footprint in big food brands. In my opinion, this one is the hardest segment to substantially break into, but is also the most important one.
Education – Food designers are currently creating theoretical concepts, working on research and with students. This is very important and helps shape the minds of the future workforce in a world in which nutrition, food waste and sustainability are big issues.
Startups – Most startups driven would be open minded enough to take on food designers as a part of their team. Many startups around the world work in the space of food, and design thinking could benefit them tremendously. I would also throw in the big four tech companies – Google, Apple, Facebook and Amazon – would be big players in employing and benefitting from having food designers on their payroll.
Food Influencers – The popularity and reach that social media has created in the past decade is astounding. Food designers could make a meaningful impact and reach many more consumers than ever before through social media. A meaningful, powerful message surrounding food would force people take social media more seriously and not “just for fun”.
Can you tell us about the developments in food and design in your corresponding field?
As the Food and Space correspondent for The DIFD, I will continuously be on the lookout for new, exciting and groundbreaking physical spaces designed for food, built with food or created while thinking about food-related activities. This will extend all along the food supply chain – from production, processing, handling, packaging, transport, storage, display, sale, delivery, consumption, disposal, waste management and anything in between. That would include spaces for innovative, sustainable farming; spaces for processing and packaging food including tea, coffee, chocolate, wine, beer and mangoes; mouthwatering bakeries, patisseries, cafes and restaurants and experiential retail outlets.
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LinkedIn: Jashan Sippy
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