Innovation That Matters

| Photo source Open Funk

A mixer for life: the kitchen appliance you can repair and upgrade


The blender has been specially designed so customers can easily make repairs and upgrades instead of throwing it away for something new

Spotted: The electronic devices and appliances industry contributes significantly to global waste with products often not designed to be repaired. Now, however, German startup Open Funk is changing this for one type of electronic appliance: the kitchen mixer or blender.  

The company has created a blender, called Re:Mix, which has a customisable casing and is made from 100 per cent recycled plastic. The device is made up of modular components to enable the easy repair and upgrading of parts – either at the company’s Berlin workshop or at home. At-home repairs like this are possible thanks to the device’s open-source design.  

The blender works with any of a customer’s standard twist-off glass jars, provided they have the right-sized opening. And if a customer no longer wants their Re:Mix, Open Funk will buy it back for refurbishment and resale. 

The idea for Open Funk came when co-founder Paul Anca attempted to fix a blender that had broken within months of purchase. Unable to carry out the repairs himself, and determined not to add to the millions of tonnes of e-waste that is generated each year, he took it to a repair shop and was quoted €50 “just to have a look at it.”  

Spurred on by this unsatisfactory experience, Anca and his co-founder Ken Rostand devoted themselves to understanding how blenders are put together and why they break. Crowdsourcing broken blenders from Facebook, the pair discovered that the root of the problem lay in cheap materials and the gluing together of components for rapid assembly. The result of their inquiries was Re:Mix, which is made to be repaired and upgraded, with parts replaced over time.  

Selected earlier this year as a participant in Amazon’s Sustainability Accelerator, Open Funk has since sent out its first batch of orders.

Springwise has spotted other innovators taking kitchen appliances to the next level, including a novel, low-energy cooking device and a countertop compost machine.

Written By: Matthew Hempstead




Download PDF