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August 9, 2022

School of Food Futures

5-day summer school for practical learning about sustainable future design, including digital food, algorithmic design, and circular design

The KYOTO Design Lab [D-lab] presents the School of Food Futures, a 5-day summer school for practical learning about sustainable future design, including digital food, algorithmic design, and circular design.

The 2022 program will comprise two stages: a series of offline workshops and online lectures with guest speakers active in Japan and abroad. The small-group offline workshops will focus on three main topics: “How to make 3D printed chocolate,” “Algorithmic design for creating new food sensations using Rhinoceros+Grasshopper,” and “Design in the Circular Economy

We are going to learn about the latest trends in food design, product design, and circular design, and to connect with a community like-minded friends.
(Organized by Kyoto Institute of Technology KYOTO Design Lab / Cooperated by MTRL and FabCafe Kyoto)

Have you ever heard of food design?

In 2009, the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology of Japan announced the Courses of Study for Senior High Schools, which defined food design as a subject that “provides students with knowledge and skills related to nutrition, food, menu planning, cooking, table coordination, etc., and fosters the ability and attitude to comprehensively design dietary life and to contribute to the promotion of dietary education. In other words, it is an evolved form of home economics.”

What exactly does “food design” design?

According to the commentary on the Home Economics section of the Guidelines for the Course of Study for Senior High Schools published in 2008, “food design” is defined as follows:

1) To learn systematically about nutrition, food, menu, cooking, table coordination, etc., and to acquire related skills.
2) To discover issues related to dietary life in general based on the current state of the general population’s dietary habits, and to develop the ability to solve them rationally and creatively and in an professional manner.
3) Cultivate an attitude to work proactively and collaboratively to promote comprehensive dietary design and nutrition education through self-directed study aimed at improving dietary life.

These three points are set as the objectives of the course. In other words, food design is the search for creative solutions through the application of design to reexamine the relationship between people and dietary habits in general.

On the other hand, various issues have emerged in our food environment in recent years, such as climate change, global population growth, and food export restrictions derived from conflict issues. In addition, a series of technological development trends called “food tech” and sustainable food development trends symbolized by entomophagy are also attracting attention. In other words, there is an increasing need to design a food culture that has never existed before, in addition to acquiring conventional dietary knowledge and skills.

From the preface to “FOOD DESIGN: Design Research for the Future of Food.”

In order to confront these transformations and explore the food of the future, the Kyoto Institute of Technology’s KYOTO Design Lab is launching the School of Food Futures together with MTRL / FabCafe Kyoto. This summer school will experiment with and explore digital food, algorithmic design, and circular design, with a focus on food design. It will be a place for those who are interested and motivated in the above experimental activities not only in the field of food, but also in product design, architecture, and other fields, to learn about sustainable future design in a practical way.

In the 2022 program, offline workshops will focus on three main topics: how to use food 3D printers, algorithmic design methods, and food design in the circular economy. In addition, in order to gain the perspectives necessary to think about food design in the future, online lectures will be held by intellectuals engaged in practical activities.

The most reliable way to predict the future is to imagine and create our own ideal future. See you at the KYOTO Design Lab this summer!

(A) Offline Workshops
We will hold offline workshops in small groups focusing on three topics: “How to make 3D printed chocolate,” “Algorithmic design for creating a new texture using Rhinoceros+Grasshopper,” and “Design in the Circular Economy. The workshops will be held in Kyoto, Japan.

Date: Monday, August 29 ~ Friday, September 2, 2022, 10:00~17:00
Place: Kyoto Institute of Technology KYOTO Design Lab (1 Matsugasaki Hashigami-cho, Sakyo-ku, Kyoto, Japan)
Only the final day, Friday, September 2, will be held at FabCafe Kyoto (554 Hon Shiogama-cho, Shimogyo-ku, Kyoto City, Kyoto Prefecture).

(B) Online Lecture
Guest lecturers active in Japan and abroad will be invited to give talks and presentations, as well as to provide opportunities for Q&A and exchange.

Date: August 28 (Sun.) ~ September 2 (Fri.), 2022, 19:00~21:00
Place: Online (zoom)
Both A and B require participation for the entire duration of the seminar.
Archived videos of B will be available for a limited time for participants only.

A) Offline Workshops Content

8/29 (Mon) Ice break, lecture, food 3D printer exercise, 3D modeling exercise
8/30 (Tue) Exercise of circular design, exercise of food 3D printer, exercise of speculative design
8/31 (Wed) 3D data creation, prototyping using food 3D printer
9/1 (Thu) 3D data Creation, prototyping using food 3D Printer
9/2 (Fri) Printing of final production, tasting of 3D printed chocolate

After the completion of the above, a period of approximately one month for individual production will be set aside, and an online exhibition of the results and a review event will be held in early October.

(B) Online Lectures Content

8/28 (Sun) “Introduction” by Tanehiro Ogata and Daijiro Mizuno
  • Introduction of Summer School
  • Introduction of Lecture Speakers
  • Introduction of how to use the “Ask a Question” corner in advance of the lecture
  • Introduction to Food Design
  • Relationship between food, design and digital fabrication, future prospects and challenges
8/29(Mon) “3D Food Printing” by Ryosuke Wakasugi
  • Introduction of Byte Bites activities
  • Current situation of 3D food printing
  • Demands from society as understood through the start-up of the company
  • Personalization of food and the possibility of wellbeing
8/30(Tue) “Entomophagy” by Shinjiro Saeki
  • Insects have been found to be a “common food”
  • The flip side of Laos’ rich entomophagy culture and malnutrition
  • Understanding the SDGs philosophy and practice through entomophagy
  • For whom should entomophagy be “designed”?
8/31(Wed) “Circular Design” by Kota Machida
  • Food and the distribution industry
  • Building a “House of Sweets”
  • Introduction of activities as fabula
9/1(Thu) “Food and Ethics” by Kazutoshi Tsuda
  • Introduction of YCAM “Food and Ethics Research”
  • Introduction of case studies on food and biotechnology
  • Introduction of a budding case study on circular design for food
9/2 (Fri) Presentation by offline workshop participants, with Tanehiro Ogata, Daijiro Mizuno, and Kazutoshi Tsuda
  • Presentation of the final products
  • Possibilities and issues seen in the experiment of using food 3D printer
  • Tasting session, report on actual food

For inquiries regarding this event, please send an e-mail to the following address (Attn: MTRL, Kinoshita and Ishii)


  • FabCafe Global Editorial Team

    This articles is edited by FabCafe Global.

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    This articles is edited by FabCafe Global.

    Please feel free to share your thoughts and opinions on this article with us.
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