rocery delivery service Ocado was forced to temporarily suspend parts of its online service last month due to coronavirus (Covid-19). The panic buying induced by the virus resulted in a tenfold increase demand. However, even before this unprecedented surge Ocado has been steadily growing over recent years. A quick Google search shows the impressive growth of Ocado’s share price since its initial public offering. Investment in technology and intellectual property (IP) have played a major role in this growth.
Insights: Consumer Products & Manufacturing
The COVID-19 pandemic has created a worldwide shortage of ventilators, and in the UK, the NHS is soon expected to require significantly more ventilators than are currently in circulation. As a result, on Monday 16th March, the UK government called for businesses to help make ventilators and ventilator components in an attempt to dramatically increase the number of ventilators available to the NHS in a matter of weeks. In response, both existing manufacturers of ventilators are increasing production and other manufacturing businesses are joining the effort.
Driven by a variety of concerns about the environmental impact of meat consumption, animal welfare, and/or health considerations, large numbers of people are moving towards vegetarian, vegan, or “flexitarian” diets. In the last 2 years alone, demand for meat substitutes has grown by 37% in America, and by 30% in western Europe, and Euromonitor expects the market for meat alternatives in both Europe and the US to double by 2022. And with growing public awareness of the impact of intensive animal farming on global warming, this trend is forecast to go only one way.
Brewing giant Carlsberg recently unveiled two prototypes for a “paper beer bottle”, as part of the firm’s Together Towards Zero environmental initiative.
On Saturday 12 October 2019, Eliud Kipchoge became the first person ever to run the marathon distance in under two hours, when he completed the INEOS 1:59 Challenge in a staggering 1:59:40. Gavin Dundas investigates the technology that helped him to achieve this.
In modern manufacturing and design processes, computer models and simulations play a key and ever expanding role. Whereas previously many different prototypes may have had to be individually machined and then tested, now each design can be tested virtually. This allows optimal designs to be found without incurring any of the expense, or expending any of the time, associated with manufacturing multiple custom prototype components and designs- here we focus on the automotive sector.
There are different innovations that are tackling the huge problem of plastic pollution. As a result of increased awareness of this problem, many of us are making changes to our lifestyle, for example, to reduce our reliance on single use plastic items such as straws, bags and bottles. But there is one particular form of plastic pollution that seems to have attracted relatively little attention so far – microfibres.
Amazon.com has introduced a new non-profit procedure that allows patent owners to take down listings of infringing goods. Amazon’s Utility Patent Neutral Evaluation Program lets owners of a US utility patent obtain a quick evaluation of patent infringement from a US patent attorney. If the attorney agrees that the item being sold in the product listing infringes the patent, and the patent is prima facie valid, then Amazon will remove the product listing from Amazon.com.