This article originally appeared on ARCHITECT.
Announced recently, IKEA and Tom Dixon's Design Research Studio—the British firm's in-house design and innovation lab—are partnering up to introduce a new line of products focused on transforming urban farming. Using IKEA's five "Democratic Design" principles—form, function, quality, sustainability, and low price—the two companies aim to design and develop products that will potentially help integrate food farming into residential spaces, and make sustainable farming accessible to everyone. The new partnership, according to IKEA, will also help build awareness of where our food comes from, and will focus on introducing innovative, affordable, and sustainable ways to grow food and medical herbs at the comfort of our homes and in urban environments.
“For IKEA, this collaboration is about challenging the way society looks at growing in general and addressing that it’s both possible and rewarding to have a place to grow your own plants in the city,” IKEA range and supply creative leader James Futcher said in a press release. “Food is key to humanity and design can support with better solutions. Because at the end of the day we need people to feel inspired to grow and harvest their own edibles within their homes and communities.”
As an initial concept, an experimental garden model will be unveiled at the Royal Horticultural Society's Chelsea Flower Show, being held May 21–25, 2019, in London. Divided into two levels, the model will focus on highlighting the importance of growing food locally, and will explore natural and technological planting methods. According to Dixon's Design Research studio, the model's lower level will house a horticultural lab where hyper-natural edible plants are grown using hydroponic technology, and the upper level will feature a raised garden that offers an ecosystem of trees, flowers, and plants that have medicinal, health, and environmental benefits.
“Gardening is unique in its universal appeal and its transformation power,” Tom Dixon said in a press release. “Without plants and more planting, we are all in trouble! Although we are not traditional garden designers, we think we can demonstrate ways that anybody could make a small difference and broadcast not only the beauty but also the functional importance of horticulture through both traditional knowledge and the latest in growing innovation.”
According to IKEA, new product line will be available at its stores worldwide by 2021.