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Home Bioreactor, Local food from plant cell cultures

Niko Räty’s master thesis investigates acceptance of plant cell-based cellular agriculture by designing the home bioreactor (CellPod) that enables anyone to grow plant cells as a food in home environment.
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Cellular agriculture can transform food production by offering new sustainable alternative for food production that saves agricultural space and resources. Cellular agriculture makes food production seasonless, pesticide free, cruelty free and it allows growing of rare species without harming the natural existence.

Problem of this novel way of producing is that many of the production methods require highly trained professional. Lab environment may seem strange and this way of production is in early stages and attitudes differ toward this kind of development. In spite of that, now the technology is ready to offer these solutions to anyone.

Niko Räty’s work follows up the design process of the home bioreactor that enables plant-based cellular agriculture. Räty exploits a constructive design research methods to conceptualize the new product category in the future kitchen and investigates tangible aspects of the novel food production concept. Qualitative part of the study shows reactions toward the topic. Social media outlets together with internet based Co-creation have worked as interactive channel between research group and enthusiast to perceive the attitudes toward the topic. In his thesis, Räty presents the final concept and prototype of the home bioreactor and positions it to the future markets.  

This work reveals how design can be tool which can provide important information and how even the designed prototype of the invention can offer important glimpse to the future.
 

Räty’s thesis project is done together with VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland Ltd and it is one example what biodesign can be. Final prototype of the Home Bioreactor can be seen in the Enter and encounter exhibition at Designmuseum, Helsinki 24 March – 22 October 2017.

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