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Our Incredible Shrinking Kitchens
Joyce L. Gioia, CMC, CSP --  The Herman Group Joyce L. Gioia, CMC, CSP -- The Herman Group
Austin, TX
Wednesday, July 6, 2022


The Herman Trend Alert

July 6, 2022

Our Incredible Shrinking Kitchens

The other day, I went to dinner with my local women's group and one of the women confided that she has not cooked in 25 years. And I know that she is not alone. With many other options in their increasingly busy lives, given the choice, people with the financial resources are simply choosing not to make their own meals. Earlier that week, my friend and colleague JP Lacroix, one of the principals in SLD Design out of Toronto, shared with me that for years now, kitchens, especially in urban dwellings, have been shrinking. This Herman Trend Alert details that trend and what is behind it, as well as what the future holds.

Alternatives Abound

One of the fastest growing (and most profitable) areas of supermarkets is pre-prepared foods. In their local supermarkets, consumers may avail themselves of almost any kind of meat, fish, or poultry dish they might desire. Second is the new abundance of food delivery services happy to deliver your order from local restaurants to your door in a few minutes. And finally, we have the national delivery services like Blue Apron and Sunbasket, providing chef-prepared foods to heat and eat.

Why Bother to Cook?

Then there is the psychological aspect of cooking for one or two. The thought of spending an hour cooking a meal which we consume in 20 minutes seems like a lot of trouble for the result. That said, my husband and I really enjoy the freshly prepared vegan meals we get in our kits from Purple Carrot each week. For us, pre-prepared meals simply are not the same. This way, we get to have foods that are prepared to our tastes---with typically less salt and nothing super spicy.

A New Idea in Kitchen Design

The product of a design project from the design firm Industrial Facility, a new idea called "KIT" allows homeowners to build their kitchens around their appliances, instead of the normal way that kitchens are designed where the appliances are an after-thought. This concept allows for both a DIY flexibility, and a level of smart appliance networking never-before-seen in home design.

Appliances Shrink to Fit Smaller Kitchens

Living spaces are shrinking as well. People are discovering that they can live without large kitchens. In fact, although many kitchens are open to the living spaces, since the 1960s, kitchens have shrunk by about 13 percent. According to Consumer Reports Magazine, many manufacturers are making smaller versions of their appliances to fit singles and other small households. Most people will not need a full-size mixer if they are onlycooking for two.

What's Ahead in Food Prep?

In 2019, I was privileged to participate in the iconic event SXSW. There I saw a demonstration of a 3-D printer for food. The Japanese company is called Open Meals and they demonstrated their 3-D printed Sushi. Their foods can even feature custom-tailored nutrients, so that the food is not only tasty, but good for you as well. The square pieces of "sushi" are beautiful as well as healthy and delicious. They actually serve this futuristic fare at a Tokyo restaurant call Sushi Singularity and characterize it as a "Hyper Futuristic Sushi Restaurant Experience." And let us not forget the replicators introduced in the Star Trek television series. Closely related to the 3-D printers, these food replicators are also on the horizon. In the meantime, there is the Genie. Think of it as Keurig for solid food. Delivering chef-quality, nutrient-dense meals in less than 3 minutes, Genie is a revolutionary pod-based cooking system---powered by patented Artificial Intelligence and advanced robotics. Genie performs the complex tasks of hydrating, whisking, mixing, cooking, heating, boiling, cooling, and steaming, programmed for each specific meal.

Next Week's Herman Trend Alert: 3-D Printed Houses are Here

Quite literally, 3-D printed homes are here in Austin, Texas and the system will be available across the planet. When you see the details of how environmentally friendly and less expensive these homes of the future truly are, you, too, will feel like you want to own one.


News Media Interview Contact
Name: Joyce L. Gioia, CMC, CSP
Title: Certified Speaking Professional and Management Consultant
Group: The Herman Group
Dateline: Austin, TX United States
Direct Phone: 336-210-3548
Main Phone: 800-227-3566
Cell Phone: 336-210-3548
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