Good design and innovation depend on an endless curiosity and exploration. At Whirlpool, research is constant and creativity is fuelled by regular analysis of future trends. Through workshops and dialogue with designers, business, gastronomy and social experts, the Whirlpool’s Global Consumer Design team applies a free creative and visionary approach to the exploration of the identified trends and creates concepts to enhance the future domestic experience.
FreshConnect, one of Whirlpool’s latest explorations, talks about a shared future where people actively participate in creating a better world, by using new technologies with the main goal of saving resources. The concept reveals an entirely new approach to food conservation – a series of specialized accessories connected by a central cooling system with an online delivery service.
Central Cooling System
A central cooling system brings the right atmosphere (temperature and humidity level) to each connected accessory. The system can be shared by several apartments in the same building which brings benefits for all through energy saving.
The design of the accessories is defined by the food that inhabits them. They are optimized in size to avoid food wastage and the home delivery service guarantees a fresh supply of products according to personal needs. The atmosphere (temperature and humidity level) is automatically adjusted to the type and amount of food inside. If the container is empty, the system automatically turns it off to save energy.
The Fruit Basket is divided in two levels. The top tray is meant for fruit and vegetables that benefit from light (inside the handle). The light is designed to facilitate the ripening of fruits as well as maintaining their original freshness. Two different types of light are used: visible light for enhancing nutritional values and UV light for killing bacteria. The bottom tray is used for vegetables like potatoes and onions that prefer darkness when conserved.
The Bread Basket keeps the bread fresh as if it had just been bought from the baker’s. The inside tray can be used as a serving dish at the table.
The wine coolers preserve wine at the desired temperature according to the different types of wine. They keep the temperature stable even when brought to the table (autonomy of two hours off the docking station).
The Herbarium provides the ideal environment for growing herbs and spices all year round. The integrated lighting guarantees the right amount of light even on cloudy days and the system reminds the user to add water when needed.
Separate compartments have been designed for products that prefer to be concealed, like dairy, fish, meat and frozen foods. Each compartment provides the ideal atmosphere for the conservation of the selected items.
Ordering system + Delivery Bags:
This online service is a selected network of local fresh food suppliers that provides a fresh food delivery service directly from the supplier to the customer. Placing an order is easy, since the service can be accessed from anywhere through all smart devices (computers, tablets and phones).
The online system keeps track of the food supply at home and helps the user to build a shopping list. It creates a community network that rewards group orders. The users get benefit in lowered prices when ordering together; they also collect community points that benefit the whole neighborhood.
The freshness of the products is guaranteed from the source to the end user by the use of specialized insulated delivery bags that can keep the desired atmosphere inside throughout the delivery. The bags are delivered and locked onto a docking station that utilizes the same centralized cooling system as the one inside the home. The system will continue to feed the bag with the right temperature and humidity level to the moment it is picked up by the customer and brought home.
All orders are processed centrally to optimize the food transportation in the most eco-efficient manner. Group deliveries reduce pollution caused by individual shopping and eco-transportation is used, when possible to make the delivery.