Current Magazine

Foods Of The Future

Posted on the 23 July 2013 by Pacificprime @ThePacificPrime



As time marches on and humankind faces ever more mounting social, economic and ecological issues to survive, major changes in the way we live are inevitable. Not just in terms of reduced dependence on fossil fuels, but also in considering other ways we can live more sustainable and energy-efficient lifestyles.

If you are already living on the cutting edge of efficiency – driving a hybrid, getting all of your electricity from solar cells, recycling your used toothbrushes and only wearing recycled and thrift store apparel – then it is time to start looking for even more creative ways to reduce your carbon footprint. A good place to start is by taking a look at what you put in your body. 

This doesn’t just mean free-range, organic, farmer’s co-op, non-GM crops, but rather adopting a diet of full-on future foods – rethinking the norm and putting emphasis on high-yield, high-energy food sources to replace wasteful production methods, and polluting foods we eat now.

Here are some of our best future food options. And before dismissing them as unrealistic or unappealing, bear in mind that many of the foods consumed nowadays would seem pretty unappetizing a century or two ago. So don’t be too quick to rule out these suggestions for genuine alternatives to the foods you rely on today.


Urban Agriculture

Already instituted on a small-scale in a few cities around the world, urban agriculture takes the concept of a farm and turns it vertical. All the fruits and vegetables that we regularly eat on can be grown in any place with sunlight and warmth, and by constructing or repurposing existing tall buildings in urban centers as high-rise greenhouses, food can be grown in the same neighborhoods as the city dwellers that consume it.

For sure it will take some adaptive thinking to manage the farming process, but with a reasonable amount of work, these farms have already started to show promise of huge energy savings over conventional farming. By combining rain-harvesting, thermal, solar, and closed-loop hydroponic technologies together, these “sky farms” could be almost entirely self-sufficient, producing their own electricity, virtually eliminating trucking from farm to market, and even possibly growing fish or shellfish in their water-filled growth tanks as a side industry.


Alternative Protein Sources

There are two big reasons humans have always chosen to raise herbivores for our food, milk, and wool. First, grazing on grass, which is usually free, makes these animals far more economical. Comparatively, to raise a carnivore such as a lion or tiger would require about 100 times by weight the amount of digested herbivores (other animals) to produce an equivalent amount of meat or milk for subsequent human consumption. Secondly, herbivores don’t have the inconvenient habit of eating their shepherds.

The problem lies in how to raise domestic animals in sufficient numbers without negatively impacting our lives and our planet. As an example of this issue, cow flatulence is being blamed for the ever-expanding hole in the ozone, and the huge amounts of waste that result from high-volume fish, pork and poultry farming (not to mention the frequent cross-species disease that emerge and affect humans, providing endless fodder naysayers claiming that we will eventually eradicate ourselves due to our own greed and hunger) leave no alternative but to reevaluate where our protein will come from in the future.

For Westerners especially, who consume the most protein from meat annually and get almost all of it from farm raised animals, it may soon be time to look at some other already available options.


Bugs are the most obvious choice for alternate protein in years to come. In fact, this is not so much future food as an ancient one. Humans were consuming insects, larvae, spiders, grubs and worms long before the first steak was grilled up. And in Asia, Africa and South America, these critter are still prominent on many a menu.

The reasons are simple: bugs are abundant, very cheap or free to raise and catch, and extremely healthy and nutritious. Bug-eaters even have a fancy title: Entomophagists, which is sort of somewhere between a vegetarian and a carnivore really, and is actually a very back-to-nature way of living.

What is even better is that insects also taste pretty good, since they tend to absorb any spices they are cooked in and can be ground into a paste to hide their typically crunchy texture. In fact, many processed foods already contain bug extracts or by-products, so there really is no reason to fear the six-legged food group you’re probably already eating. Bugs might be the only thing that saves us from ourselves.

Game Animals

Game meat is another, easier to swallow (pun intended), future protein source.

Currently bison, buffalo, reindeer, alligators, ostriches, rabbits and more are being farm-raised for human consumption, and with good reason: they are typically much leaner, healthier, and more economical than the meat they usually replace – beef. Plus they are really tasty, and as non-domesticates they tend to be heartier and more energy efficient pound-per-pound than cows, though they do still pass gas.

Thinking a little further outside the box, but much more sustainably, ostrich and emu eggs are an incredible source of protein that African and Australian bushmen have relied on for millenniums. One ostrich egg is equivalent to over two dozen chicken eggs and is much higher in protein, by about 47 percent, while also providing more than 2,000 calories of energy. So basically, you can make omelets for a family of six with just one egg.

Kangaroos and wallabies are another plentiful wild game protein source that is often scoffed at, but may be the hamburger of the future. Gaining popularity in Australia as food prices continue to soar, kangaroo meat has already been exported to Russia, China and Japan for years as a way of thinning and controlling the population of this “menace species.” Plus, kangaroo is a great replacement for lamb or beef since it is much lower in fat but higher in protein than either one.

Finally, bats are another virtually untapped source of dinner. They may take a bit of getting used to for many, even though humans have been eating them for ages. Flying mammals are abundant and high in calories, which makes them a great survival food, and catching them is easy because all you need to do is place a net in front of their routine flight path. Simple. Then just invite your friends over and grill them up.


The Bottom Line

If the oceans have been overfished as much as is reported and our current food supplies are as unstable and inefficient as the news tells us, and global warming does indeed pose an imminent danger to humanity, then the reality of what is on our plates in the near future is about to change dramatically. In preparation for the coming food-pocalypse it might be best to incorporate a few new future-food recipes into your regular repertoire as soon as possible.

Back to Featured Articles on Logo Paperblog