The Whirligro is a vertical growing platform for quick growing, nutritious leaf crops.
It is based on a double helix structure in which plants are grown in tubes that spiral toward the ground around a central post. The product enables people to grow food vertically instead of horizontally, which means it is possible to grow more plants in any given area.
After inventing the Whirligro and developing a number of prototypes, Iain was struggling to find a partner who could manufacture his product. Sustainability is central to the ethos of Permaculture Ltd so it was important to find a locally based manufacturer, willing to utilise locally sourced materials. The company was hamstrung by certain design characteristics that made the product prohibitively expensive to send by post and an improved design would help to remove this barrier. Improved design to ease manufacture using simple equipment would also make the product easier to license for production in lower income countries where the need for growing food is crucial.
Iain approached Interface and was put in touch with the programme of Product Design, Edinburgh College of Art. Using £5,000 of initial Innovation Voucher funding, Ian was able to work with member of Product Design staff, Ingo Aurin, and two designers in residence in the Product Design department to refine the design of the product.
Please note that Interface administers the Innovation Voucher Scheme on behalf of the Scottish Funding Council. All funding applications are reviewed on a case by case basis by the Scottish Funding Council, guidelines can be found here.