Innovation, trucks and mustard ice-cream

August 20, 2009 at 3:46 pm 1 comment

By Peter Baeck

I remember the fist time I read about The Fat Duck and its mustard ice-cream, and being a bit shocked. In my world mustard didn’t, and to some extent, still doesn’t go along with ice cream. One should be used for ham and sausages the other should taste of vanilla or strawberry and be served in a cone or with a cake. But still, the chefs as The Fat Duck made mustard ice cream, they did this because the found out that the combination of the two would create a taste sensation. Innovation and mustard ice cream is in some ways the same thing. When experts in logistics from the Technical University of Denmark (DTU) apply the software they have developed for freight companies so that these can more efficiently manage their freight trucks and cargo ships, to the in home eldercare sector it is innovation. When chefs develop an ice cream that becomes world famous for its taste, even though no one could have imagined it before, it is because they have understood the system that is our taste buds, which allows them to put the food puzzle together in a completely new way.  The logistic experts willingness to combine their expertise in one sector with something completely new, enabled the service company to improve the efficiency of their in home service deliverers significantly.

This is one example on how doing as the chefs at the Fat Duck and getting a broader insight to the entire system and enable public sector agents to share knowledge and try existing successful solutions in various fields. Creating a system with an infrastructure that allows this could potentially improve public sector efficiency and cut costs.

So what’s my point? Maybe we should all go and cook some weird food one day and see where that could take us!!


Entry filed under: Innovation Policy, Innovation Worldwide.

How do we define innovation? Index Awards 2009

1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. Claire McEneaney  |  September 16, 2009 at 1:57 pm

    Peter – I’ve just been listening to the new Muse album – The Resistance – which is a huge musical innovation of an album! Muse have mixed classical symphony with rock to create a really theatrical sounding album.

    It made me think of putting two things together that you would think are total opposites (rock/classical music; mustard/ice cream) and coming up with something really innovative thats greater than the sum of its parts.

    Are there any opposites that exist in public services that could be brought together to create something equally impressive and dynamic?


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