This Designer Came Up With a Zero-Waste Kitchen Plan — and It Looks Great, Too

published Aug 30, 2021
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Credit: Viv Yapp

Austria-based furniture designer Ivana Steiner created a stand-alone zero-waste kitchen that can be installed in any space. After conducting field research, putting together a zero-waste focus group, and talking to local Vienna shopkeepers and customers, Steiner crafted a unit that is easy to use and fits a zero-waste lifestyle.

The island unit, which can be used for food prep, eating, and cooking, is made from recycled stainless steel and features two pull-out countertops. Underneath, the system includes a worm box/compost container, fruit and vegetable baskets, glass containers, and at the end, a vertical herb garden.

The unit comes with linen bags that read “Don’t Melt Our Future” to go produce shopping with, and the glass jars come with scoops so that the user can take their jars to the store to be refilled without needing plastic packaging.

Per DesignBoom, a water jug under the double sink collects excess water that is wasted while waiting for the faucet to heat up, which can then be used to water the herb garden.

The only other necessary requirement to install this zero-waste kitchen unit is a tumble dryer to wash dish towels (because there are no paper towel rolls in a zero-waste lifestyle), and there is no refrigerator included.

The zero-waste island is made to be installed in any home, and Steiner even designed an apartment-sized version as well. As of right now, this unit is still in its concept phase, but with more and more people interested in pursuing a minimalist lifestyle that requires less waste, Steiner concept could soon become a reality that’s in high demand.