SchoolKraut is a service that aims to promote healthier and more sustainable food habits in Scotland, by introducing the practice of fermentation, through fermentation workshops in primary schools. Indeed, this low-tech, local, affordable, and easy food preparation and preservation technique creates probiotics, benefiting the digestive system and learning capacities. With a systemic and holistic approach to the current obesity epidemic problem, this intervention develops new narratives about fermentation to help more empathic relationships towards the environment and more resilient food behaviours flourish.
After an adapted contract is designed by the local council, the participant school's catering manager, and the school's wholesaler, a SchoolKraut box is delivered to the school with ingredients and equipment. A playful in-class fermentation workshop is conducted regularly by the teacher. The workshop's recipe follows the story of a modern witch who needs the pupils' help to heal people and the environment. When the food is ready, it is tasted at school and taken home to share with the family. Recipes are also available online to ferment at home.
Fermenting is a reciprocal engagement with non-human species (food and bacteria) and honors the powers of Mother Earth. In Scotland, it was strongly related to the history of witchcraft, as this mysterious process could lead innocent women to burn at the stake. At the same time, fermentation is a science and can teach a lot about nutrition. This intervention suggests a new narrative of fermentation, a balance between witchcraft and science, to promote a new image of this amazing technique.