A vertical greenhouse in Stockholm, Sweden
The world diet in 2062 or 2112 will be as unfamiliar to most people today as our own cosmopolitan diet of fast food and ethnic cuisines would be to our great grandparents in 1912. The new foods will be the result of fierce demand and resource pressures on food worldwide, astonishing new technologies, and emerging trends in diet, farming, healthcare and sustainability.
That’s the conclusion of Australian science writer Julian Cribb, who says that a series of crises in human population, oil and transportation, climate change, and the poisoning of the oceans will lead to a revolution in how we eat.
Cribb says that our present “killer diet” (foods that lead to heart disease, most cancers and diabetes 2) will soon largely disappear.
As transport fuels become scarce and costly, there will be a fresh focus on locally produced foods. If cities and the resources sector continue to take water and land from farmers, and supermarkets continue to punish them economically, much of our future food may be grown in factories, rather than on farms. If technology continues to snowball, it will give rise to a host of novel foods we can barely imagine today.
But Crib is an optimist. He sees our future diet as far more “diverse, interesting, healthy, resource-efficient and creative.”
Factory farms will be replaced by aquaculture, algae farming, novel fruits and vegetables, urban agriculture and biocultures, all of which will be healthier not only for us humans but for the rest of the planet.
Gone will be most of the ways we farm today. Instead, Cribb expects to see “high-tech glass skyscrapers producing vegetables, fruits, fish and small livestock by largely hydroponic methods” and a renaissance in backyard, balcony and public food gardens.”
And while climate change will be hard on food production in parts of the world that are the current major food producers, within 50 years we’ll be seeing new lands opening for grain and grazing in the high north, “with Canada and Siberia poised to emerge as food superpowers of the 22nd century.”
Whether or not you’re as optimistic as Cribb, one thing’s for sure: the way we eat and the way we produce our food are certainly going to be changing.
The full article is at the Sydney Morning Herald.