As Eco-Social Designers we are focusing on the benefit of the environment as well as the wellbeing of societies or a certain community. We‘re not working for financial profit or economic growth — but primarily for sustainability on all levels.

The project is meant to support a small group of farmers from Malles, Val Venosta, and to start a project with and for them, helping to solve one of the problems they face at their work. So, consequentially we started by getting to know our target group: Instead of growing few things on a big scale the group of farmers from Malles decides to grow a big variety of goods on a small scale without the use of pesticides. Thereby they encourage biodiversity and protect the environment. At the same time they are highly engaged in trying new things and learning more about their work and their products. This way of working is very time- and cost-intensive and many of them cannot sustain themselves. Our conclusion: They need direct-marketing-opportunities and real support from consumers.

We decided to help them in setting up a direct, long-term connection between them and consumers in Bolzano through a food box subscription. With that we want to also create a base for an independent, circular and solidary community between farmers and consumers in which not only the exchange of money and products is concerned, but as well the exchange of knowledge, time and real support. The aim is to create an alternative economic system, which can sustain itself without being dependant on the global market economy. Excluding middlemen and other intermediary actors all resources are kept in a clear and overseeable circle of people, who commit alltogether to a socially fair and environmentally sustainable way of acting. We (and the farmers) believe that a real and trustworthy relation can help both parties to understand each other‘s needs and prerequisites better and to then act accordingly.

The name Pioniere derives from a quote of one of the farmers during one of our meetings: „In some way we‘re all pioneers.“ This pioneering spirit to always try new things and test unknown ways is a very valuable resource, which we would like to transport to the audience. On the other hand the consumers have to be pioneers as well, supporting and shaping this new economical concept and testing out how it can work.

The entire design has the goal to leave space for the things that are really important: the products and their benefits as well as the people and their voices. Most of all: The project shouldn‘t try to be something that it is not (not even graphically). Instead it has the objective to be real and authentic.

We want to keep communication between farmers and consumers as easy and direct as possible: Blank notecards or letterpaper encourage the farmers to write personal messages to their members. At the same time they can personalize their own stationery with an individualized stamp, containing their contact info.

For the logo we have chosen a word mark that — instead of visualizing Malles tradition and culture — remains minimalistic and modern. Being based on a circular economic system, the divided O in pioniere represents the two parties: producers and consumers have to work together to make the project successful. The positioning supports a feeling of movement and dynamics as well as openness towards new ideas and change.

We put a particular effort into working with natural materials, both for the stationery and marketing materials, as well as for the product design. As graphic elements we put into focus the products as delicate drawings that serve as detailed representations underlining their quality. Handwritten elements taking up quotes of the farmers are combined with two further typefaces that support the handmade, crafty feel on the one side and the elegance and clarity on the other side.

The use of a crafted wooden box makes it easy to deliver the goods safely from Malles to Bolzano. To protect the products even better and to make transportation easy for the members as well, we decided to addtionally use a bag. When delivered, the bags can also contain news-cards or info-cards on certain products and thereby serve as a direct communication-channel with the members.

And now — we really hope to make this project a reality and not have it be just a concept that remains a nice and beautiful theory…


Creators: Insa Keilbach, Giulia Bencini
Context: Semester Project, November 2015 – January 2016
Extent: logo, business cards, letter paper, notebook, info cards, product cards, poster, info brochure, bag, website
University: Free University Bolzano, Italia
Tasks: idea, concept, layout, design, research, website