An enterprising schoolgirl has won an award after designing a device which enables people to significantly trim down on food wastage.
11-year-old Rumaan Malik has come up with an ingenious and simple invention called the Alarm Cup which has a primary function of alerting when foods are about to expire.
Rumaan came to the fore after excelling in an online competition organised by Little Inventors who continually look for opportunities to turn children’s invention ideas into real-life items and Grocery giants Ocado.
Rumaan was inspired to come up with her design after her own experiences at home often led to her favourite Apples going soft after being left in the fruit bowl and forgotten all about. So, she put her thinking cap on to come up with an innovative idea to prompt people using an alarm and thus prevent rotting fruit being thrown into waste bins.
The Alarm Cup allows user to use a touchscreen visual display to select a fruit to prompt an alert alarm. The screen also offers handy tips and recipes like banana bread and apple crumble to help to cut food waste.
The Little Inventors team turned Rumaan’s gadget idea into a working product. The Grasby All Saints Primary School pupil was awarded the Ocado’s and Little Inventors Food Waste award and her appliance sits proudly on display at Newcastle’s Discovery Museum as part of the Great Exhibition of the North.
Along with Rumaan’s success 16 children’s ideas were made real for the North 2030 Challenge Exhibition amongst the results of many other Little Inventors Competitions worldwide and have also been on display in the North East Discovery Museum.
Helen White, special advisor on household food waste at WRAP, said: “We were particularly impressed by Rumaan’s invention as it addresses one of the key reasons food ends up in the bin: not using it in time. Even if we understand the difference between date labels, we can still struggle to use what we’ve bought.
“The Alarm Cup challenges this by reminding us when our food needs using up, and nudges us towards adopting positive behaviours that can help to reduce the five million tonnes of good food wasted from our homes every year.”
In Britain alone £13 billion worth of food is binned annually.
The ingenious but breathtakingly simple idea by an 11 year old British schoolgirl could be the answer to curbing food waste. Watch this space!