Simple Mills puts regenerative ag into the design process for its pancakes. When I think of product design, my Silicon Valley-raised brain goes straight to software or electronic gadgets. But every food product that stocks our grocery store shelves is also “designed” — culinary wizards and food scientists with chemistry backgrounds are mixing hundreds of ingredients with slight recipe adjustments to create the next trendy oat milk or granola bar. Traditionally, the two most important criteria to balance in this process have been taste and cost, but Simple Mills and other environmentally conscious brands are adding a new aspect to their design specifications — sustainability. “We make regenerative ag part of the design process,” said Shauna Sadowski, vice president of sustainability at Simple Mills. To that end, the Chicago-based company is consulting soil scientists, farmers and other experts to find and source new ingredients that can combat climate change and expand its product offerings. This could mean substituting a water-intensive grain for one that is more water-adaptive or sourcing from farmers who practice regenerative agriculture or it could involve expanding the types of ingredients used in recipes to combat monoculture farming. One of Simple Mills’ goals is to create […]

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