The number scares a bit, the year 2025. It seems a long way off, but there are less than 10 years left to finish the first quarter of the 21st century, and IKEA already knows how the kitchens of the future are going to be, of that future. Not only the kitchen itself, but how we develop in them, how we are going to use them due to important concepts such as recycling, sustainability, food production within the kitchen, its storage and preparation among other culinary issues. . To find out this, IKEA has collaborated with IDEO and students from the School of Industrial Design at Lund University, as well as the Industrial department at Eindhoven University of Technology for 18 months. A part of the result of this collaboration can be seen in Milan, in an exhibition called Concept Kitchen 2025. Where can we see the kitchen of the future, according to IKEA. The one that we are going to see next.
The central axis of this kitchen goes through the table. Which is not just a table, but a food preparation center, a responsive and interactive virtual cookbook, and a play area for children.
Thanks to a projector placed just above the table, it shows us the graphs, detailing the food, preparation instructions, suggestions and other very interesting and necessary details. Since your system recognizes the food that is put on the table. We can also place a cutting board and it will tell us how to cut, a diagram and instructions. If we put two foods, one next to the other, the table will suggest a list of recipes in which those two foods are used.
To understand the enormous potential of the kitchen of the future, watch this short video showing the impressive use we can make of the table.
Once we have the ingredients chosen and prepared, the table highlights a cooking surface where we can put the pots and cook the food on the same table. All this technology will make life in the kitchen much easier and, by keeping all activities in a single table, we will not need more countertops and we will have more space in the kitchen.
Although this is the part of the kitchen that stands out the most for its usability and design, the IKEA kitchen of the future does not end here, far from it.
IKEA suggests that in the future we will not do the shopping weekly, but daily thanks to autonomous vehicles and drones, therefore, food storage will be much lower and of higher quality. With this premise in mind, the traditional fridge or refrigerator is eliminated, giving way to a single modern cupboard in which we will leave the food in view, inside smart packaging, being aware of the food that we have at all times to waste less food.
The “fridge” shelves contain hidden sensors and smart induction cooling technology to keep perishable food fresh and at the right temperature thanks to a smart label that reads the food. In addition, this shelf or cupboard will include other storage spaces made of terracotta, being fresher, ideal for storing foods such as potatoes, garlic, carrots, tomatoes, etc., naturally. And all this, always having the food visible and within reach at any time.
Another point that has been taken into account when design the kitchen of the future, is recycling. This kitchen includes a recycling and composting system to make our life more sustainable by making us more aware of what we are throwing away.
On the one hand, organic waste they are washed in the sink of the composting system, where the water is extracted from them and compressed into a dry toilet disk. These discs are stacked and later discarded. The water that is extracted from them is not thrown away, but is used thanks to the nutrients it has to use it safely for indoor plants.
On the other hand, we have the non-organic waste. Bottles, cans, containers, etc. All this is scanned by the recycling system, to identify what it is made of. Once identified, the system packs and seals them in an empty biopolymer tube. In addition, a thermo-printed label records this waste for possible future uses and, depending on how wasteful we have been, we will receive an energy credit or a debit credit.
The use of water is another key factor that identifies this futuristic kitchen. Because water is more and more valuable and will continue to be more and more as the years go by, IKEA has designed a solution that makes us aware of our daily use of water.
For example, the sink has two holes or two drains: one for the “gray” water, a water that can still be used to wash or water plants, for example, and the other drain, for the “black” water goes directly to the sewer system for proper treatment.
Luckily, it seems that the efforts by designers and IKEA have been directed more towards sustainability than design, without leaving it lightly, of course. What do you think of this kitchen? Do you think you are on the right track?
Watch: IKEA Hydroponic Garden