NED (NOT BREAD)

EDIBLE PACKAGING

A few summers ago we were on a camping trip with another couple and one of the partners  had a gluten allergy. We had stopped  at drive-thru for a quick refuel on the way back. The gluten free friend (GFF) had ordered a vegan burger with a lettuce wrap to avoid the bun. What a mess! There were condiments all over her hands and  subsequently, my car!   Not only is the gluten a problem, it’s also the high carbs of that bun. A typical burger bun is some 40 grams of high glycemic index refined white flour. There had to be a better way.

When we got back to or studio, I grabbed ( hang on, not physically)  a colleague and  we brainstormed. I always loved the genius of the edible ice cream cone, especially the  one inaccurately named the “cake” cone.  I did a little research  and these wonders of industrialization, a literal injection  molding  of water and flour are only 6 grams of carbs and that’s with rice flour. And, it gets better…, if you use almond flour, you can bring the carb count down to zero! Not to mention how brilliant the whole  family of edible  packages are!  Taco shells! Sushi! And then.. wholly cow ,  and  start digging in more,  and  did you know  the average common restaurant – remember those , burrito  flour tortilla  can be 80 grams of  carbs!!!

The big idea was to make a small edible piece of luggage, kidding, not luggage but a bread or tortilla  replacement that could be gluten free if needed  and lower carb. This is good for celiacs, diabetics and everyone that wants to lower their ingestion of high glycemic  index carbohydrates.  By the way,  the term “Keto” was Google searched for more than Subaru in the Pacific NW.

In terms of design,  this concept  allows  almost infinite shape, color, texture and flavor. This concept can replace anything where bread is simply a carrier. Think pizza, tacos, burritos, all the bread shapes,  even low carb snacks like crackers can be NED. Best of all if you were brought up by TV like some of  us were, then  you’ll love  the brand-ability of this concept. See the images above.

Knowing there’s a fair amount of tooling (though relatively inexpensive per mold) to make these things, we approached the Joy Cone company with NED. They are biggest  ice cream cone maker in the U.S.  with plants in Pennsylvania and Arizona. Joy makes special branded cones for  some of their largest customers.

I don’t  want to say we’re brilliant, but I think  given the hand friendliness, this qualifies as thumbelievable!

Ok, shutting up now –  have a look!

 

ANAND SPORT POD

Serial entrepreneur and avid competitive tennis player, Dr. Rahul Anand (he’s an anesthesiologist),  was annoyed when he saw  college and pro tennis players throwing sweat laden towels on the court after wiping off. Initially, he had hoped this was just a rare occasion, but it continued to happen. Dr. Anand even contacted the players and/or their management teams to make them aware of the hygiene problem this towel discarding was causing.  Still, no change.  Exasperated, Dr. Anand decided to take this problem on. This is where FUSE comes in.

Armed with the problem Dr. Anand  was trying to fix, FUSE got to work.  FUSE retraced the research, and for sure, this problem is a new animal. Not that it’s rare, just that its not been recognized. Lots of products start  this way,  we as humans adapt to  situations. Look at what TESLA is trying to do  with the removal of stalks.

After numerous concepts and a couple of full scale prototypes.  A tight production budget started to provide clarity.  Our team and Dr. Anand settled on the Rocket concept.  Initially the Rocket was a single  part roto-molded creature. It  would hold towels, warm-up clothing, balls, hydration and personal items (phones, keys , wallets, etc.).

While initially designed for tennis,  our team imagines the pod being valuable in multiple venues. The Sport Pod is at home pool side, beach side, in the gym and in the world of hospitality. With available accessory trays, the Anand Sport Pod is the perfect guest at your next barbecue.

In order to ship around the country, the world, and not ship air (or cost more than the product), we  worked with the molder to make the the legs  snap on. It fits into a FEDEX and UPS friendly box and sets up in minutes with no tools.

 

BikeBark

This was a proactive project  providing a solution to the problem of bike parking since  most bike have lost kickstands. The problem is  you lean your bike against paint damaging poles and then  your bike suffers  more than cosmetic damage.  We got this into Wired magazine and sold into REI. The rubber manufacturer who was pressing  BIKEBARK bought the product a few months after we premiered at Interbike.

REMORP – Orp’s remote

 

When we built Orp, the super smal really cool bike horn/ bike light, we built it to be Remote Ready. Meaning: make a small wired switch that cold be placed under thumb that could go wherever the rider wanted.  This simple product  makes the Orp experience that much better as you never need to lift a hand to actuate either of Orp’s horn sounds.  The REMORP uses a slick dual action switch. Press lightly on REMORP’s bulbous swelling to fire Orp’s loud sound and then press a little harder to fire Orp’s 96dB loud sound.  The  other cool thing about  the REMORP is it provided an update to the Orp product line  that worked for all Orps and Orp owners. It’s super neat and you should go to Orpland.com to get one… now!

Orp Smart Horn

Be More Splatterproof!

Orp was  developed after a spate of fatal right hook vehicle vs. Bicycle accidents hear in Portland Oregon.  It seemed like there had to be a way to make bikes more visible to drivers. It seemed a a loud horn could make this visibility happen.  Also with this digital platform we could design our own sounds and have multiple sounds. We were really excited and started with just a dual tone horn but got a big “meh” from targeted users. When you look at the circuitry it got us thinking, it would be  really easy to add LEDs wyhout adding a whole lot of volume.

Adding the lights  made Orp much more intriguing. You ve got to have a light, right?  With a slew of positive feedback we launched a Kickstarter campaign and  it did fairly well. Our media coverage  during the campaign and after production was amazing. Highlights included the TODAY show, Wired and the Wall Street Journal.

It took a year to get us to production Orps. We went to the factory twice during that year. About a year later we introduced  the REMORP-Orp’s Remote.  All Orps were built Remote Ready.First year sales were amazing there are around 30,000 Orps in the world and  stillm  its growing.

 

 

 

 

FURILLA

A Friend Furever.

Furilla  started life as a gift for a friend but then that friend’s  friends also wanted Furillas.  Next, FUSE had several projects to enter into the IDSA IDEA competition and  we thought Furilla would be a welcome reprise from the more serious ID products the judges would evaluate. Unexpectedly, Furilla won a Bronze.  With this small bit of  notoriety it seemed like an OK idea to launch Furilla.com, a website that would sell Furillas. Soon enough Furillas ended up all over the world.  Furilla was fortunate to slide into then unknown to us blossoming designer toy trend. Furilla  got picked up by several media outlets and was sold at KIDROBOT and  even had a premier at Chicago’s ROTOFUGI. Above is totally a cover story. The real story involves  invitro fertilization and a freak accident.

Late in 2005  KIDROBOT  decided they wanted to license Furilla and build production in Asia. We were on board but then the project hit a snag when the pricing  swelled beyond feasibility.

.