Scientific advances and technological innovation will lead to major changes in the food and food production sector. Through the following Visual Capitalist infographic, we tell you about four of the main trends that can be glimpsed through the slit of the future.
The exponential increase in population density and the environmental threat posed by overpopulation will require the use of technology as an ally to optimize processes and live more sustainably. Thus, we will live in smart cities, we will use the energy from renewable sources or we will use Big Data and Artificial Intelligence to predict the weather or save on the use of our appliances.
Taking into account that the world population increases by one million people per week, not the areas that will undergo more variations and innovations will be food, a section affected by the emission of polluting gases, pollution of ecosystems or waste of food, issues that technology can substantially improve. Without going any further, the Internet of Things will allow or optimize distribution chains, improve the traceability and quality of food and extend its expiration.
To know how some of the main foods we will consume in the next decades will be interesting to take a look at the following infographic elaborated by Visual Capitalist, which synthesizes and reflects some of the main technologies of the future that will allow us to obtain more food with fewer resources. Although many products will fail, others will be culturally accepted and commercially viable.
4 food technologies of the future
It is very likely that what you will take to your mouth in the future is closely related to the following innovative technologies:
Automated vertical farms
This type of projects will be oriented to guarantee the supply of the world population, allowing the sowing in small spaces and the large-scale production within the cities themselves, reducing the impact and cost of transporting food to the final consumer. In addition, being monitored and controlled, the agricultural model is independent of weather conditions, and automation eliminates the need for human activity in various stages of the process. Without going any further, in Japan, they have created a vertical farm that produces 30,000 lettuces per day and whose planting is done through hydroponic and aeroponic systems.
This type of farms need 99% less water than open-air fields, use 40% less energy and generate 80% less waste, although the problem is the cost of their implementation, so they do not know when they will be commercially viable.
Another of the revolutions of the future will be the extension of aquaponics, a term that starts from the combination of the words “aquaculture” (production of aquatic organisms) and “hydroponics” (production of plants without soil). This sustainable system of production of plants and fish will allow fish to grow under urban orchards -both at a private and industrial level-, saving 90% of water and eliminating toxic chemicals.
The basis of the aquaponic system is that the fish are responsible for producing the fertilizer from the soil from the waste of what they eat . This natural composting is pumped to the surface and absorbed by the plants, which in turn purify the water through their roots, without the need to add clean water every week.
In vitro meat
Also called artificial meat or cultivated meat, consists of the production of meat products through the technology “tissue engineering”. whose advantages with respect to traditional meat go through the economy, health, welfare of animals and respect for the environment. The procedure is that the stem cells are extracted from live animals without causing any damage and are placed in a culture medium where they can multiply and grow independently of the animal, without genetic manipulation.
Without going any further, Memphis Meats, who recently managed to recreate veal meat in the laboratory, did it recently with chicken and duck. The problem, for the time being, is a large number of resources it requires for its production. Of course, market demand already exists: a recent study found that 70.6% of US consumers are interested in trying lab-grown beef.
Artificial animal products
Another way to obtain artificial meat is to use machine learning to understand the complex chemistry behind these products and find a way to replicate them. It could also be used for other foods of animal origin such as eggs, milk or cheese.