Heated issue

Competition Details

Smart Shopping Bag

by Jo Szczepanska

This is a product which allows consumers to monitor the impact of their everyday decisions on the environment. Using RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) technology this is a shopping bag which provides consumers direct and easy to understand feedback on the environmental impact of their shopping choices, focusing particularly on climate change.

RFID sensors embedded within the bag independently pick up signals from products once they have been placed within it, while the bags interface tallies the cost of the products placed within it in a financial and environmental sense.

The impact of each bags contents may be re-evaluated in comparison to a preset standard or optimal eco-footprint. At the POS (point of sale) the items may be reviewed and goods payed for and receipt printed.

More specifically the impact of each item is shown in terms of black balloons; it is based on ‘embodied energy’ and ‘food miles’ associated with its production. This product would potentially be regulated by environmental and government institutions dealing with climate change and sustainability within each country or region.

The bag also allows for sustainable tips, facts, and environmental slogans to be displayed when on standby.

The size of the bag is constrained to ergonomic standards and the design incorporates both a shoulder strap and reinforced handles to add to ease of use.
Materials used would include sustainable, carbon neutral and locally made fabrics.

The interface would be facilitated through the use of OLED or LCD screen systems which where laminated to allow for washing.

Power may be facilitated through rechargeable NiMH battery, or alternatively a sew-in solar panel, so hanging the bag out to dry will also allow it to charge.