The humble egg — a symbol of fertility, creation and rebirth — has provided inspiration to artists, scientists and designers for centuries. Today, most of us share chocolate eggs with each other at Easter time to represent the resurrection of Christ (and because chocolate’s pretty tasty, and Easter’s a good excuse to eat some).

Since we’re all about innovation and ideas in the IP world, we wanted to inject some creativity into this year’s proceedings. So here are three alternative Easter egg ideas and inspirations for the important man, woman or children in your life. Let’s crack on…

For her — a ‘healthy’ chocolate egg

You know what they say — “a minute on the lips… a lifetime on the hips.”

But what if chocolate could genuinely be considered a healthy treat? Well, scientists at Cambridge-based product development company Lycotec Ltd have proven that it can be. They’ve identified that a combination of carotenoids (soluble pigments which give colour to plant parts) and cocoa beans can be used for weight management and reducing blood cholesterol levels.

The company filed for patent protection on the resulting innovative cocoa-based food products, which can be used as a dietary supplement, a nutracosmetic or a nutraceutical. A European patent (EP2785195) was awarded for the technology in September 2018.

There are plenty of chocolate options out there that claim to be ‘healthy’ and filled with antioxidants, as well as a whole host of ‘free-from’ alternatives. And as a general rule to keep those calories off, the more cocoa, the better!

For him — the ‘Big Green Egg’

The ‘Big Green Egg’ is a modern-day evolution of the dome-shaped, earthen vessels in which food was cooked during the Chinese Qin Dynasty (221 to 206 BCE). Discovered by US servicemen who had been posted to the Far East during World War II, this style of ancient cooker soon gained popularity. Ed Fisher imported the domed clay cooker after the war and opened the first Big Green Egg store in Atlanta in 1974, but the original design was fragile and definitely not weatherproof.

Over time, engineers incorporated new types of ceramics into the dome, inspired by NASA-developed ceramics. Other technological advancements led to a stronger, more durable BBQ with improved heat insulation properties. One of the patented design features is the weatherproof, rust-proof and burn-proof chimney vent cap which offers precise temperature control with intuitive aperture settings that restrict the flow of exhaust gases. The cap is protected by US design patents (USD8170920 and USD810509) and a US utility patent application (US2017/0370592).

From early beginnings in the Far East, via its evolution in the US, this egg-shaped kamado grill is now available in the UK, and really would be the perfect gift for those hosting guests outside on unpredictable British weekends.

For the kids — the ‘Eggling’

Gone are the days of nurturing mustard and cress seeds resting on soggy cotton wool in an egg box on the windowsill. Now, your little chicks can marvel at a plant hatching from an egg. The Eggling Crack & Grow is a ceramic egg shell packed with soil and seeds for plants such as basil, lavender, wild strawberry or even a cactus. Simply crack the top of the egg with a spoon, water and watch the plant grow. This Japanese invention was devised by Iseya Tsutomu, and has a granted Japanese patent (JP3220941).

Easter gardening has never been easier…