When it comes to knowing what’s in your food, labels only provide so much information. Sure, it’s nice to know the calorie count, as well as the sugar, salt and fat content of the food you purchase, but labels can’t tell you how fresh a product is, nor can they tell you if it contains certain toxins. Nutrima is a food-monitoring device that aims to make consumers more aware of their food and its quality. Just by placing the food items on the device, it can calculate a piece of food’s weight, basic nutritional information, freshness, and it can also caution the user of high levels of the most common toxins, such as mercury.

The Nurtima concept, which was recently developed by Janne Palovuori from Helsinki Metropolia University of Applied Sciences, was recently named a finalist in the Electrolux Design Lab competition. An interesting aspect to the design is the way it is powered. Instead of plugging it into socket and waiting for it to charge, Nutrima uses piezoelectric materials; the user has to bend the plate repeatedly for it to charge up, and once the UI lights up it is ready to go.

Palovuori also plans develop the Nutrimapper Mobile app, where users will be able to share experiences, both good and bad, making an impact on their local food market by encouraging people to buy their groceries from trusted shops and local sellers. In today’s world where processed food passes through several synthetic processes before reaching the consumer, a product like the Nutrima would be a great way to screen for toxicity.

+ Nutrima

+ Electrolux Design Lab
Images courtesy of Electrolux Design Lab