The Brinery

Reviving fermentation for contemporary lifestyles to support gut health and
alleviate food waste.


The Challenge

How might we revive fermentation?

Fermentation is an ancient and crucial food preservation technique that maintains a healthy gut, reduces food waste and has infinite creative potential - however, many households no longer ferment as current products and lifestyles have relegated it to the fringes of society.

The Outcome

The Brinery is an at-home fermentation vessel that makes the process much simpler and more attractive to the mainstream. By beautifying fermentation, it aims to challenge common misconceptions associated with the process and accelerate its adoption as the next disruptive food movement.



Harper's Bazaar, Print



Finalist, RSA Student Awards


Ahreum Jung
Marie Tricaud
Pratik Ghosh

To ferment is to lodge an eloquent protest against the homogenization of flavours and food experiences now rolling like a great lawn across the globe. It is a declaration of independence from an economy that would much prefer we were all passive consumers of its commodities, rather than creators of unique products expressive of ourselves and the places where we live. Because your sauerkraut will be nothing like mine or anyone else’s.

Michael Pollan

Fermentation promotes good gut health, reduces food waste, and empowers culinary creativity.

The Brinery solves technical issues associated with common fermentation products.

Mechanism descriptions of The Brinery
Go to market

A pop-up restaurant concept to reframe the narrative

Since most people we interviewed were apprehensive about fermentation, we designed an experiential dining concept to reframe fermentation and introduce the Brinery to our target customer.

It involved three distinct design interactions: Taste, Transformation and Health.

Go to Research process

How might we revive fermentation?

Concerned with humanity’s dependence on technology for food security, the increase in global gut health issues, and discovering that fermentation is a great solution for both, we started with wondering how we can revive fermentation.

Image source: Nordic Food Lab.

“Bog butter” is a Nordic butter preservation technique where they bury butter in soil for many months, sometimes years - imparting new flavours and increasing its nutritional benefits.of a div block.

Step 1

Understand the challenges by fermenting for ourselves

We tried more than 30 different ferments - from maintaining a sourdough starter to fermenting leftover salad and creating naturally carbonated drinks. We had friends taste test our results.

A collage of experiments for The Brinery

Snapshot of several of our experiments

Sourdough making experiment card

Sample experiment card

Step 2

Understanding people’s behaviours towards fermentation

Next, we ran several design experiments to better understand people’s understanding of and behaviours towards fermentation.

Yogurt making experiment card

Snapshot of several of our experiments

Step 3

Interviews with fermentation experts and extreme users

We went on a research trip to France where we met with food historians, cheesemakers, wine makers, cider makers and an extreme fermentation hobbyist.

A cheesemaker in front of his cheeseA cider maker measuring alcohol in her ciderPantry stocked with fermentation jarsKilner jar used for fermenting

Major Reasearch Insights

There’s a growing interest in raw, unpasteurised, probiotic foods but most people are apprehensive to do it themselves.

Fermentation is extremely safe to do at home and should be encouraged as industry is far too regulated to create diverse products.

Even seasoned fermenters feel the products out there could be better as it is mostly DIY and getting it right every time is an art.

Fermenting for beginners is a steep learning curve as it is difficult to know what is happening and why.

Step 4

How might we make the fermentation process much simpler so that we encourage more people to succeed early on and support them in adopting it?

From our research, it was clear that the main problem was that there aren’t any products specifically designed for fermentation. Beginners give up quickly due to the DIY nature of fermentation.

Specific technical criteria, such as keeping the ferment under the brine and allowing CO2 to escape without allowing O2 in is very difficult to achieve with current tools.

Customer persona for Healthy Henry
Customer persona for Holistic Hanna
Customer persona for Probiotic Paula
Prototype for a fermentation device 1
Prototype for a fermentation device 2
Prototype for a fermentation device 3
Prototype for a fermentation device 4
Prototypes of a fermentation deviceIdeation drawings and brainstorming
Go to final outcome