In 2007, while making lunches for our two daughters, we became frustrated with the amount of plastic baggies used every day. The typical store bought lunchboxes we owned were impossible to clean, they collected crumbs and foul old-food odors. Worst of all, our kids were over the novelty of their lunchboxes less than a week after buying them! That was the start of our journey to re-invent the lunchbox. We knew there had to be a better way. We set out to balance our passion for the environment with our kids' passion for having fun.
Knowing we couldn't go it alone, we sought out Whipsaw Inc., a highly acclaimed Industrial Design firm in Silicon Valley CA. Whipsaw had designed many hit products including the innovative Adiri baby bottle and the Leapfrog LeapPads. Dan Harden, Whipsaw’s President and chief designer (and also a parent of lunchbox kids), was excited by the opportunity to reinvent this old product. It was then that we, along with Dan, set out to design the world’s best lunchbox, called “yubo”.
We started the design development with lofty goals. We wanted to make the lunchbox customizable, interactive, fun, flexible, functional, washable, ecological, colorful, beautiful, and of course, very cool and loaded with personality. Yubo had to be something both kids and parents would love. The evolution of yubo took over a year, after hundreds of sketches, CAD diagrams, models, and protoypes, yubo was finally born. At last, a lunchbox that’s simple, clean, functional, eco-friendly and fun!
A SMARTER LUNCHBOX Cyndi Pedrazzi, 37, San Francisco
THE CHALLENGE Pack kids' lunches without using piles of plastic bags.
THE EARTH-FRIENDLY SOLUTION A lunchbox with washable storage compartments.
A few years ago, Cyndi Pedrazzi took her older daughter shopping for a lunchbox and was surprised to find that the design hadn't changed since she herself toted a Scooby Doo box. Lunchboxes were still empty shells, so Cyndi would have to use at least four plastic bags per lunch for her girls, now 6 and 3. And all the boxes she found were made of vinyl or nylon instead of aluminum or plastic, so they couldn't be tossed in the dishwasher. Cyndi imagined a stylish plastic alternative, with dishwasher-safe storage compartments. "I wanted something that was good for the environment and unique," she says. Her design would have changeable faceplates that kids could customize with pictures or artwork — so moms wouldn't have to buy new lunchboxes each year.