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New Zealand-based startup Pure Food Co has begun using moulds to make its pureed food resemble its original state. The company makes pureed food for those unable to eat solid foods. Founder Sam Bridgewater was inspired to start the business after a family member fell ill and was unable to eat traditional food and struggled to stay healthy. The company reports that “47 per cent of older people entering hospital or aged care were malnourished and another 43 per cent were at risk of malnutrition”. During a recent trial of the new moulds at Auckland's The Orchards retirement home, none of the 12 residents suffered any weight loss while being restricted to soft food.

You’re probably not in the business of shaping carrots, but here are two reasons why this innovation is still worth your attention:  

Post-demographic demands. Yes, this isn’t the first innovation we’ve featured that’s aimed at older audiences: from Town Square’s fusion of healthcare with the Experience Economy to No Isolation’s accessible tech to Intel’s VR ‘travel’ experiences. But we shouldn’t need to remind you of why. Not only are there forecast to be more than an extra billion people aged over 60 by 2050, but research shows 86% of marketers overestimate how much consumers under the age of 35 spend, whilst 72% underestimate how much consumers 55 and older spend! More importantly, people’s expectations don’t just flatline at sixty. Gen Z aren’t the only ones craving well-designed, accessible, convenient, delightful, [insert your key basic need] products and services. Who knew?! ;)

Fake? Or faketastic?! As trend watchers we regularly beat the drum for authenticity. But sometimes you’ll need to break the rules and create things that are decidedly and unashamedly inauthentic. In this instance, of course that’s because Pure Food Co’s customers can’t experience the real thing. But perhaps you could win back trust by exposing your industry’s secrets, as Suave’s haircare campaign did. Or make a powerful point about sustainability, as Etat Libre d’Orange did with its perfume made from trash, and WWF did with its Ivory Lane campaign. So, here’s a useful exercise for your next brainstorm: where would our customers embrace inauthenticity?!