I few weeks ago I was lucky enough to attend a really unique event with some other Edmonton bloggers and media called the Sustainability Feast hosted by Ford Canada. What does Ford and a feast have to do with one another? I’m SO glad you asked!
You see, Ford has been doing some pretty incredible things with sustainable products (like corn, coconut & soy, to name a few) and using them in the production of some of their vehicles. As a matter of fact, they’ve invested 4.5 billion dollars into the sustainability cause. To learn more about this and celebrate these great innovations we enjoyed some education from Ford’s food scientist Mica DeLong along with a delicious 6 course meal created by the chef at Zinc Restaurant at the Art Gallery of Alberta.
Each menu item had an ingredient in it that Ford is using in their vehicle production in one way or another. Here’s what we ate and why!
- A salad of pickled bamboo shoot, dandelion leaves, radish and beets in a pink peppercorn vodka vinaigrette. Ford is testing ways to use dandelion components as a synthetic alternative to rubber.
- Coconut crusted salmon filet, tomato dust, wheat berries in shallot cream, algae foam. This was my favourite course of the night! Coconut was used because Ford is already using the husks in their Focus Electric car and F-150 and the tomato fibers, found in the discarded skins from ketchup manufacturing, are being tested for use in various interior materials.
- Truffle puff wild rice, shaved bison tongue, apple smoked foraged mushrooms, roasted Taber corn, maple syrup consumme. What a dish! This one used corn as Ford is currently testing how to use corn waste by-products in floor mats. Rice was another component because Ford is already using 45,000 pounds of rice hulls to reinforce plastic for the electric harness in the F-150.
- Miso marinated grilled lamb chop, edamame beans, wasabi potatoes, fried nori, rosemary calvados gastrique. Soy is used as a major component as it is already in all cushions and seat backs of all North American Ford vehicles!
- Sugar cane marrow, walnut crumb, corn creme brulee, cherries. Sugar cane husks are currently in the testing phase to be repurposed and again corn for floor mats.
- Cold pressed canola oil cake, candied heirloom tomatoes, coconut cream. Again, this course represented the use of coconut husks that are already being repurposed and tomato skin fibers that are being tested.
The meal was nothing short of amazing and I learned so much about the innovations that are taking place with Ford to utilize products that are sustainable and can be repurposed or recycled into new materials and products. It doesn’t just stop at food though! Mica shared with us that Ford is using retired US currency as a plastic filler in components like the coin trays in consoles. Another fun fact, there are 25 plastic bottles used in the carpeting of every Ford Escape!
Want to learn more about this topic? Check out this article from Ford.