Image for Hope 100: Thinking outside the lunchbox

Hope 100: Thinking outside the lunchbox

A scalable, carbon-neutral street food concept for local communities. StreetCube is #88 in the Hope 100

A scalable, carbon-neutral street food concept for local communities. StreetCube is #88 in the Hope 100

This piece is part of our Hope 100 series, telling the stories of the people and organisations creating hope for 2020 and beyond

High rents make it hard for independent chefs to open their own restaurants and as a result, the UK’s city centres are increasingly dominated by chains selling packaged food – neither local nor nutritious. That’s the assessment of chef, Pascal Gerrard, who has developed a street food concept to try and address these issues: StreetCube.

Gerrard buys old shipping containers, cuts them in half and converts each part into a carbon-neutral kitchen. Next, he persuades councils to let him install the kitchens in public spaces and rents them out to independent chefs at a variable rate, determined by how much local produce the chefs use in their food. All chefs adhere to a zero-plastic policy.

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The StreetCube concept has been introduced to Wandsworth, London, and Gerrard is trying persuade other councils to let him in.

“These kitchens are designed with professional chefs in mind,” he explains. “They’re zero-emissions with big solar panels on the roof and living walls.”

Gerrard developed StreetCube with fellow chef, Olivier Blanc, son of Raymond. The pair set themselves the challenge of improving public health, planetary health and employment prospects for independent chefs.

“If you put a StreetCube in the middle of a town centre you can engage audiences with sustainable food, empower chefs to operate their own businesses and reduce the impact on the climate by using less CO2,” said Gerrard. There’s certainly a lot riding on it. “I sold my house to do this,” he adds.

Image: StreetCube

Hope 100: The people and organisations creating hope for the future

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