Pulve, sustainability, and innovation

In this blog, I want to take you on a literal journey that focuses on touching the topics of food and sustainability. And how complex this journey is and will be for our future generations. I will do my best to touch on a couple of difficult points with regard to food and sustainability and try to give the reader [you] a couple of angles to think about. Let’s go!

What is sustainability?
Let start with the basics. The S word, a.k.a sustainability. What does it mean? The sustainable definition that is quoted most often comes from Our Common Future, also known as the Brundtland report:

‘Sustainable development is development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs’

Okay, sounds clear right? The only caveat I would mention is what need? The definition is not really clear about ‘the needs for present and future generations’. We all have a need to eat, have shelter and socialize with other people. But do we all have a need for an Xbox 360 and play Halo 3 on legendary mode? Some do some don’t. This comparison may sound ludicrous, but the point is that some people feel that they have different needs than the rest of the world. But I digress. Back to the definition. It means that our current means of production and our current way of living cannot interfere with the way our future generations produce their goods and live their life’s. But how far should we look into the future? 20, 60 or even 5000 years? This is a tough but paramount question. Luckily do we have sustainability development goals that paint a time frame in which certain goals need to be met. If one is interested in the SDG’s I would highly encourage to visit the following site: https://www.un.org/sustainabledevelopment/sustainable-development-goals/. If one wants to contribute to a better and more sustainable future, I would highly suggest finding your niche in one of these SDG’s and work till there is nothing left. You will be rewarded I can guarantee you that. If one wants to delve a little bit deeper into the topic of sustainability and some of its answers to obtain this, meaning the circular economy, I would suggest reading one of my other blogs called: my fascination for the bio-based economy and the circular economy.

Pulve in the context of sustainability  
One can view Pulve in essence as a type of centralized food. And the name Pulve comes from the word pulverized. Hence the product is pulverized, héhé. Now, assuming that most people know what Pulve, or any other meal replacement product, is. I want to mention a couple of points why I think that Pulve can be a more sustainable method of consuming food than a conventional diet. Right of the bat, Pulve does not contain any animal products, its vegan, and therefore the CO2 footprint is considerably lower than food that also consists of animal products. There is less packaging involved, and thus less plastic to transport the meals. One of the first versions of Pulve had a 100% biodegradable Tip lock pouch.

Also, since Pulve is pulverized and does not contain any water, the footprint of transportation is lower because a significant portion of food consists out of water. Because the product does not contain any water the perishability of Pulve is significantly lower. MRPS’s like these have a shelf life of 6 to 12 months. In the future, products like these might even be delivered with fully electric vehicles or even drones. The applications are endless.

Now, products like Pulve, in my opinion, are an addition or can function as a good substitute for certain meals but cannot replace an entire diet. I have never made the statement that Pulve can replace food. In defense of other MRP’s suppliers, I have never heard claims of them stating that their product can replace food as well. The study of nutrition on the body is in the time span of evolution in its infancy. It would be foolish to say that we know all the answers in 2018. Now, there are some guidelines made by the EFSA, that we follow, that state the quantity and the type of macro and micronutrients that an average person needs on a daily basis. This is a good place to start in my opinion.

The dichotomy of sustainable food and food requirement of homo sapiens
There are a couple of things that boggles my mind and the following point that I am trying to make is one of them. We see a tendency to produce food more sustainable. This means that food is produced organically, which does not necessarily mean that it's more sustainable. The book: Omnivore’s Dilemma by Michael Pollan talks at great length about this. food is produced locally and consumed locally. People adopt a more vegetarian or vegan diet. Which is definitely more sustainable than a non-vegan or vegetarian diet. But here is my point. We follow certain food trends like it’s an ideology but don’t ask ourselves the why question. Why do we follow these food trends? What I mean with that is this. how do we know which food trend to follow or better expressed which food trend fit our physiology? We don’t really know for sure which food trend to follow if we don’t do proper blood testing. In my humble opinion… Of course, there are some feedback loops. When one feels sharper, has more energy, loses body fat in the right places and is less sick.  But to state that everybody must follow diet X because it’s good for the environment is strange in my opinion. 

In closing, I hope I gave you some food for thought :) the world of nutrition is so complex and so interesting that one can completely emerge oneself. All the best and as always, enjoy the ride.


Team Pulve 

1 comment

Sep 21, 2018 • Posted by Latest Fuels

I have thought about sustainability recently, due to RTDs being the trend currently. RTDs are one of the least sustainable complete food alternatives, because of the packaging, the nutrient to volume ratio, and the sheer volume for shipping.

While the pouches are the more sustainable alternative, convenience is likely to win. Do you have any solutions to this issue or thoughts how it could be improved?

In my mind there are two middle-way solutions:
1- Offer bigger RTD bottles. Something similar to how milk is sold. This would be targeted for people who consume RTD at home (however, likely it would make some powder people swap).
2- Glass bottles. Like with the old milkman, who used to deliver milk at home in reusable glass bottles. He would pick the empty ones and leave full ones. This would require a more local approach or a more complex logistics, though.

I would love to hear what you think

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