The Future of Food Melbourne Design Week 2023

The Future of Food Telstra Creativity and Innovation Series

Wed 24 May 23, 6.30pm–8pm

The Future of Food Melbourne Design Week 2023
Past program

NGV International

Great Hall
Ground Level

Booked out

This program is fully booked. To be added to the waitlist, please email with your full name, contact number and quantity of tickets and you will be contacted if tickets become available. 

Join other adventurous foodies for this participatory tasting of unique, speculative and thought-provoking food.

The Future of Food is a forecast of what will be on our plates in years to come. Stemming from Melbourne Design Week’s central theme of ‘design the world you want’, this event is an opportunity to explore how circular thinking, eco-innovation and food technology will shape our future palettes whilst providing potential solutions for the preservation of the environment.

From ground-breaking approaches to eco-farming, radically circular food waste innovation, to bug-laden proteins and artificial meats, the evening will be co-curated with eco-activist and entrepreneur Joost Bakker and will include a menu of tastings with matched drinks alongside thought-provoking conversations.

Meet Joost’s guests who are leading the way in reimagining food production, manufacturing and consumption. Discover what the food of the future might look (and taste) like, and what innovations are already underway that are transforming how and what we eat.

Please note the menu may include meat, dairy, seafood and experimental food products. Ingredients will be listed on the night to inform those with dietary considerations. Modifications will not be provided.


Joost Bakker is a discipline-crossing creative and visionary. Highly regarded for his distinctive aesthetic and design ingenuity, Joost has been commissioned to create large scale public installations, vertical gardens, event spaces and hospitality interiors throughout Australia. He is the creator of the Greenhouse by Joost, Brothl, Australia’s first fire resistant straw bale home, Future Food System and a multitude of associated concepts, products and venues. Driven by making a difference to the world – Joost’s innovations in building materials, waste-treatment and nutrition are attracting global interest. Living in a time where there are many challenges and uncertainties regarding resources and the state of the environment, more and more people are welcoming such new ideas and thinking.

Ewan McEoin is the NGV’s Senior Curator of Contemporary Art, Design and Architecture and editor of the Field Guides to Victorian, Tasmanian and New South Wales Produce. And the Field Guide to Australian Produce published by Thames and Hudson.

Menu & Speakers

The menu will include tastings of unique and speculative cuisine from the below innovators in the food industry, who will share with the audience the story behind their product and its impact on the future of food:

Four Pillars Gin

Four Pillars Gin was established in 2013 in the Yarra Valley on the outskirts of Melbourne and has become one of the world’s benchmark distilleries and Australia’s number one craft spirit. Four Pillars makes a range of gins headlined by its original Rare Dry Gin, Fresh Yuzu Gin, Olive Leaf Gin, Spiced Negroni Gin, the cult favourite Bloody Shiraz Gin and the world’s most-awarded Navy Strength Gin. Four Pillars’ home remains in Healesville in the Yarra Valley where the Distillery is located, with a second home, a world-class Laboratory, in Sydney’s Surry Hills.

Circle Harvest | Skye Blackburn

Circle Harvest is one of Australia’s leading insect protein farm and food manufacturing facilities. The Circle Harvest team farms insects as one of the most sustainable forms of protein. They circle fruit and vegetable waste into their food system as feed for their ‘mini-livestock’, which also using a fractions of the amount of space, water, and feed normally used to produce protein.

  • Speaker: Skye Blackburn is a food scientist and entomologist with a passion for sustainability within our food system. Skye founded Australia’s first insect protein farm in 2007. Her passion for sustainable food processes is truly contagious and she has dedicated dedicated her life to educating consumers about the amazing health, nutritional and environmental benefits of using insect proteins as a source of food. Skye believes that by developing familiar foods, that are enriched using invisible insect based ingredients, we can harness their nutrition in a way that will become a normal part of our future food system.

Fable | Jim Fuller

Fable is on a mission to help accelerate the world’s transition to a more sustainable food system, by making delicious meaty food from mushrooms. Leveraging the nutrition and natural umami flavours of mushrooms that help make meat so appealing, Fable’s delicious meaty mushroom products are minimally processed and made with all natural plant-based ingredients. The Fable range of preservative-free, GMO-free, and gluten-free products are made from agriculturally-grown shiitake and agaricus mushrooms that undergo a proprietary method with minimal processing to draw out the natural meaty, umami flavours and nutrients of mushrooms. Fable’s products are developed by resident fine dining chef and mycologist (mushroom scientist) Jim Fuller. Combining his unique knowledge of mushrooms, chemical engineering, nutritional science with his expertise as a chef and a mushroom farmer, Jim joined forces with 2018 Australian Organic Farmer of the Year Chris McLoghlin and vegan entrepreneur Michael Fox to co-found Fable.

  • Speaker: Jim Fuller is the Co-founder and Chief Science Officer of Fable Food Co. He is a fine dining chef, chemical engineer and mycologist (mushroom scientist). Combining his unique knowledge of mushrooms, chemical engineering, nutritional science with his expertise as a chef and a mushroom farmer, Jim heads up research and development at Fable, where he has forged new ground in the meat alternative market with Fable’s delicious meaty food made from mushrooms.

Magic Valley | Paul Bevan

Magic Valley is an Australian start-up producing cultivated meat products. Cultivated meat is real meat – not a substitute – grown from cells instead of raising and slaughtering animals. A 2021 McKinsey report projects that the cultivated meat industry will be worth $25 billion by 2030. Magic Valley is mission-driven and dedicated to producing products with the same taste,texture and nutrition as conventional meat. Cultivated meat will remove animals from the supply chain entirely. The cultivated meat industry has the potential to save 70 billion animal lives per annum, and allows for a 92% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions, 95% reduction in land use, and 78% reduction in water use in the process of producing meat.

While we won’t be able to serve Magic Valley’s cultivated meat at the event, Paul Bevan will share with us the latest work being done in this space.

  • Speaker: Paul Bevan is the founder and CEO of Magic Valley. Prior to founding Magic Valley, Paul previously held senior roles at ASX100 listed companies, TABCORP, NAB and ANZ and founded two other successful startups.

MainStream Acquaculture | Dr Paul Harrison

MainStream Aquaculture was founded in 2001 by two mates inspired to feed the world with delicious, sustainably produced fish. Combining a deep understanding of Barramundi biology with state-of-the-art technology and a scientific approach to fish raising, MainStream Aquaculture now operates the world’s largest Barramundi hatchery distributing high quality fingerlings to producers in 28 countries across 5 continents, and is one of the leading growers of Barramundi in Australia and throughout the world, operating 5 farms in Australia and 1 farm in Arizona, USA.

Marketed under the Infinity Blue brand, our Barramundi is a delicious fish with firm, white succulent flesh; the result of passionately combining all-natural ingredients, gentle fish handling practices and a deep understanding of the produce. Our strategically located farms allow our fish to be harvested, chilled and delivered to customers through an extremely short supply chain with low food miles. Free of antibiotics, hormones, colourants and whitening agents, our Barramundi are high in Omega-3s, vital nutrients and low in fat. MainStream is committed to the conservation of resources and the sustainability of operations and we hold Best Aquaculture Practices (BAP) Accreditation, and the Sustainable Australian Barramundi Tick.

  • Speaker: Dr Paul Harrison co-founded Mainstream Aquaculture in 2001 with a vision to create an environmentally sustainable “business for the future” based on best practice aquaculture technology. Paul has worked in Australia and abroad, he holds a PhD in aquatic biology and is uniquely qualified with a strong track record in fish production across multiple species, fish hatchery operations, and research and development both in aquaculture and more broadly in marine biology. Paul has designed and commissioned numerous recirculating aquaculture systems, has an excellent understanding of the biological requirements for aquaculture, and a demonstrated capacity to merge these skills into successful commercial ventures.

Bardee | Phoebe Gardner

Bardee is on a mission to reshape the global food system. To do this, we transform food waste into protein and fertiliser with insects. Every day tens of thousands of kilograms of food waste are diverted from landfills to be tipped at Bardee’s facility in Sunshine North. We image and blend the food waste into recipes and feed it to black soldier fly larvae in a vertical farming system. In seven days the larvae grow 3,000 times in size with no additional water, and then we harvest the insects for protein and process their castings into organic certified fertiliser available in Bunnings nationally.

  • Speaker: Phoebe Gardner is the CEO and Co-founder of Bardee and was awarded the Emerging Leader in Agriculture award by the Royal Agricultural Society of Victoria in 2019. She also featured in The Australian’s Top 100 List of Australian Innovators in 2021.

This program is part of Melbourne Design Week, 18–28 May 2023. To view the full program, click here.

Auslan Contemporary Design NGV International

Principal Partner