An emergency food brand developed with a comprehensive design approach
We collaborated with Hakuhodo Inc. on a project which takes social issues as its starting point for building a better future. Our team worked with a food manufacturer to develop and launch Gift&Stock – a new emergency food brand based on the idea of giving your loved ones the gift of preparedness with food supplies that are truly delicious. We were involved in every stage of development, from creating a vision based on social issues, to concept building, product design, brand development and, finally, package design.
In 2022, we formed a joint project team with Hakuhodo that tackles social issues to create a better future. The project team discussed what socially valuable topics we should work on as a project owner, rather than as a designer commissioned by a client, and eventually came to focus on emergency reserves and disaster recovery.
Every year, natural disasters such as earthquakes and heavy rains regularly strike Japan. The Cabinet Office recommends stockpiling a week's worth of food in case of a major disaster. However, it is reported that only 25% of the population follow this recommendation. How might we address this issue and increase our household food reserves? We set this as our project brief.
Emergency food products generally fall into two categories: those that are stocked specifically for emergency or disaster situations, and others that are generally for daily consumption but can also be eaten in emergency situations. Gift&Stock aimed to become “Emergency food meant as a gift”, a brand new type of stockpiling. The intention is to enable stockpiled food to not only be purchased for the purpose of preparing for disasters, but also to be given as souvenirs to others, so that more households have access to stockpiled food.
At the same time, it is essential to make sure that stockpiled food is easily accessible in case of an emergency. This can be an issue when food supplies are stored in places that are either hard to reach or out of sight and entirely forgotten. This can lead to other problems as well, such as supplies that are passed the expiry date when they suddenly need to be relied upon.
Being a delicious emergency food you want to give to your loved ones and actually keep in your home, Gift&Stock addresses these challenges around stockpiled food. It is designed to be visible in the home’s common areas (such as the living room or dining room) and not be an eyesore. We also believe that in order to make the experience of an emergency situation as positive as possible, stockpiled food has to taste good. The result is a delicious emergency food that can be eaten at any time.
We teamed up with Iwate-Kanzume Inc. (Kamaishi City, Iwate Prefecture) – a maker of premium canned foods who wholeheartedly believes in the mission and concept of Gift&Stock – to develop the brand's first products: three varieties of canned seafood risotto. With our crowdfunding campaign successfully reaching its target, the product was launched in 2022.
Additionally, Gift&Stock was established for brand licensing rather than as a specific manufacturer’s brand. This is meant to allow local food manufacturers all over Japan to develop their own original emergency food varieties under the same name. Companies in disaster-affected areas can produce Gift&Stock products using local ingredients and distribute them throughout the country in order to help with disaster recovery efforts. We believe that a system that supports these kinds of local and sustainable economic activities will lead to the creation of a society that is more resilient to disasters.
Shinya Sato (Shinya Sato Photography Office)
Yosuke Mochizuki (tecono.inc)
Nozaki Insatsu Shigyo Co., LTD.