LOCI Food Lab is a traveling food cart for prototyping, serving, and debating a range of bioregional food futures at different sites around the world.
A bioregion is an area bounded by natural rather than political borders, which has characteristic flora and fauna, and includes one or more ecosystems.
Visitors to the cart explore ‘bite-sized bioregionalism’ by identifying the attributes of the food system that are important to them. After identifying the three most important qualities of an ideal food system, they are served a customised, algorithmically-generated snack from a set menu of ten ingredients. The menu features crops, livestock, and food products grown within the bioregion.
LOCI Food Lab has previously created bespoke menus in collaboration with Heather K. Julius in Portland, Oregon, USA and with Ben Reade in Edinburgh, Scotland.
The LOCI Food Lab in Dublin, focuses on the Celtic Broadleaf Forest ecoregion of eastern Ireland, a subset of the Atlantic bioregion. A personalised snack is created when visitors digitally select food characteristics important to them, such as biodiverse, efficient, or delicious. The piece was part of the FIELD TEST exhibition at Science Gallery Dublin and traveled to the Body & Soul festival.
The ingredients used include: Rye crackers, from rye grown and milled in Dunany in County Louth Dried apple slices, from apples grown in County Armagh Shoots and leaves, grown by the McNally family in North County, Dublin Black pudding, made by Jack McCarthy from Tipperary-raised pigs, and rolled in Llewellyn apple balsamic vinegar Dillisk, coast-harvested seaweed by Wild Irish Sea Veg Sweet salty yoghurt, farm-cultured yoghurt from County Dublin and Macroom feta from County Cork Baby formula brittle, from Nestlé’s Wyeth nutrition processing plant in County Limerick Homemade Dirt, made from imported Barry’s Tea, Wilkie’s Chocolate, and dark spices Mushroom Dust, foraged in County Cork by Ballyhoura Mountain Mushrooms River Trout Caviar, farmed in Little Arrigle River in County Tipperary