- Emira Gerguri
On the 5th of July 2019, the Utopia500 team attended Cidade Mais which was comprised of three days of conferences, talks, workshops, open classes, exhibition, conferences - all reflecting on the main theme of the event, which was imagine.
With a perfect location in the centre of Porto, there was a big space for different activities surrounded by an amazing view of the gardens of the Crystal Palace. There were many small businesses that had their own stands representing their products or ideas: from vegan food and pastries to certified artisans selling their all-natural products. We interviewed one representative of the food stands with a product called Da Grampas that was managed by a single woman, who makes her own jams and grows the fruits in her own garden. She told us that she has a kitchen that is uniquely used for making the jams and sells them only in the markets and added that Cidade Mais help her a lot with her product promotion. Further on we also interviewed the representatives of a stand that had an initiative to help save the environment and reduce plastic usage. Their business is called Zero Plastic and, just as the name says, it is about making products without plastic.
When we asked which their favourite product was they answered: “women’s reusable pads and natural deodorants which are difficult to find in the market.” Another amazing stand was the Bioethic who make compostable products that are an alternative to plastic. They were present at Cidade Mais to bring more awareness to other alternative uses for plastic, like sugar cane or corn. Most of them can even be domestically composted (except corn). They also informed visitors about a project that the council of Porto is promoting in terms of organic waste bins, where they collect them in people’s homes and then Lipor - the company who treats the waste – treats the organic waste and turns it into compost. Another amazing stand present at the festival was Crew - Centros de Recuperação de Resíduos de Equipamentos Elétricos e Eletrónicos (also an initiative by Lipor) who had a repair café and were there to raise awareness and sensitize the community to the growing production of electrical and electronic equipment waste. They had volunteers who demonstrated how things can and should (when possible) be repaired, be it small appliances, computers and electronic consumables or bicycles. The volunteers said the objective behind this idea is to promote the Circular Economy by not instantaneously disabling these appliances. They showed visitors of the fair that with small repair capacities you can increase the life cycle of products, without the need of constantly extracting raw material from nature.
For more info on Cidade Mais click here.
For more info on CREW click here.