• Rufus Curd
  • Ella Hall
  • Juliet Hilder and Hazel Halter-Hurn trading as Kushti Bok
  • Holly Johns
  • Alison Rees

2017 WINNER … Alison Rees

Alison Rees

Dissertation Title:

Because I won’t waste with a Marks and Spencer’s Sandwich –

An Investigation into Why the Food and Packaging System causes us to Waste and How It Must Change for a Sustainable Future in Consuming Food


“Community Creations” aims to promote the brand values of sustainable social enterprises through the strategic utilization of waste materials. I am working on three “live” projects in which my material objects actively promote the values of partner organisations whilst also reducing food waste.

The Real Junk Food Project

An international organisation that intercepts food destined for landfill. ‘Crate Plate’ and ‘Bin Lid Platter’ are serving dishes made from recycled food packaging. Each design communicates the hidden value of waste.

Stoneham Bakehouse

Bread is the most wasted food in the UK, Stoneham Bakehouse is a community-led bakery based in Hove, which utilizes bread making to provide mental health support to the local community. ‘Baking letters’ enables personal narratives to be expressed through the baking process.

Old Tree Brewery

Is a traditional, zero-waste, brewery based in Brighton. ‘Cider Leather Labels’ utilizes the bi-products of the brewing process to produce food packaging and labelling for their products.

Update received from Ali Rees, summer 2018

I would firstly like to thank you for supporting my on-going education.  I am due to complete my MA in Sustainable Design at the University of Brighton at the end of 2018.

My studies have been thoroughly rewarding, challenging and exciting!  I have expanded my knowledge and skills in the field of sustainable design: specifically, the social and cultural complexities of agriculture and our food systems.  I have used the farming community and landscape of Gower (my home), as a case study to critically explore large and small-scale farming practices, and their impacts on the community, the environment and local heritage

Throughout the year I have been developing a sophisticated methodology that I will use to complete my final major project.  I have attended several UK-hosted international conferences (most proudly the Extinction and Livestock Conference in Westminster) where I have met with academics from around the world to discuss the future of sustainable farming practices.

While intensive commercial farms can provide year-round availability of produce, the impacts of these practices are damaging in multiple complex ways.  These include, for example; poor animal welfare caused by isolated living conditions and excessive use of antibiotics, loss of bio-diversity, farming monocultures, unnecessary food waste, and cultural losses to farming communities.

My current work seeks to identify opportunities for design interventions that can bring improvements to farming practices that provide for the needs of today without compromising the ability of future generations to do the same. I have created a series of design projects that communicate the complex challenges faced by small-scale farmers and the importance of developing alternative approaches to farming to ensure we can support future food systems while maintaining our cultural identity and heritage

After completing my Masters’ degree, I hope to travel to farming communities around the world to identify, develop and share best sustainable farming practices.  In turn, this will inform the development of a PhD research proposal that will expand opportunities for design interventions that inform future farming practices in our rapidly developing world.