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Bloomberg: The Kitchen Larder Is Making a Comeback

Article published on 07.01.2023 in Bloomberg – Greener living.

The Victorian equivalent of a refrigerator is seeing an uptick in UK adoption, thanks to rising food prices, aesthetic appeal and interest in energy efficiency.

In the 1907 edition of culinary bible Mrs. Beeton’s Book of Household Management, the author sets out her advice for an ideal larder. There must of course be “thorough ventilation,” the reader is told. The larder is also “the only room in the house that should always face due north, so that the sun never comes in.”

The Victorian equivalent of a refrigerator, a 1900s larder amounted to a room or cupboard for food storage, with rudimentary temperature-control measures. From a necessity standpoint, it was superseded by electric fridges in the 20th century. Today, though, the larder is staging a comeback in the UK, spurred by rising food prices, lifestyle trends, and interest in curtailing power use. Call it the energy-efficiency aesthetic: A larder won’t necessarily reduce electricity consumption, and can certainly be filled with store-bought goods. But the rustic-curious consumer is keen on a cold store that harkens back to root cellars of yore, with home-grown potatoes and mushrooms on stone shelves.

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