Zero Waste with Edible Cutlery: BAKEYS
Plastic waste covers our oceans and landfill. The past 70 years of plastic waste have resulted in pollution so ubiquitous scientists say it’s a marker of a new geological epoch, the manmade Anthropocene.
Plastic cutlery is a contributor to this enormous problem – estimates suggest the US alone uses 40bn plastic utensils a year – but the founder of Indian cutlery company Bakeys thinks he might have a solution. Cutlery you can eat.
This innovation of edible cutlery was drawn from the following concerns:
1. Depletion of groundwater can be arrested by creating markets for less irrigation demanding crops such as jowar (sorghum). The edible cutlery is made from flours of this crop.
2. Demand for power from the agriculture sector does not commensurate its contribution to the GDP and on the contrary is creating pressures on other sectors, notably on the manufacturing sector. This is largely because of the faulty crop choices. This initiative could help in triggering the right crop mix (even districts with scanty rainfall are registering increasing trends in water guzzling rice crop).
3. The demand for plastic cutlery is increasing over the days. Plastic, a petroleum by-product is more harmful to human body because of the presence of several toxins and carcinogens. Its application as food consumption utensil enhances the chances of these chemicals to get into the human system.
The vegan friendly spoons are made from rice, wheat and sorghum, an ancient grain originally from Africa. Sorghum was chosen as a primary ingredient for its tough quality (it doesn’t go soggy in liquids) and because it is suitable for cultivation in semi-arid areas.
The cutlery comes in three flavours – savoury (salt and cumin), sweet (sugar) and plain. “It tastes like a cracker, a dry cracker because we don’t put any fat in it. It can complement any food. The taste of the food gets into the spoon,” says company founder Narayana Peesapaty.