The Future of Food

Are products like Soylent and in-vitro meat the future of food?

  • The past five years have seen significant advancements in the development of a truly futuristic food with real potential to alleviate world hunger, improve the environment and end animal cruelty: in-vitro meat (IVM).
    Photo by Fotolia/JPC-PROD
  • Our increasing distrust of American food production systems is fertile ground for both innovation and hucksterism—the latter seemingly the case of Soylent, a meal replacement beverage touting itself as “the future of food.”
    Photo by Flickr/AFGE

First, the puzzling news. In January 2012, the USDA proposed the “Modernization of Poultry Slaughter Inspection” rule, slated to take effect in October 2014. The HACCP-based plan would decrease the number of USDA inspectors overseeing poultry slaughter assembly lines, allow the lines to run faster, and turn over the majority of inspection duties to company employees, essentially privatizing the inspection process. The remaining USDA inspectors would focus on laboratory testing for pathogens.

In a 2013 report, “The High Cost of Chicken,” Consumer Reports stated: “We recently tested 316 samples of raw chicken breasts bought from stores across the country, and found salmonella on 10.8 percent of samples. We also found campylobacter, another pathogen, on 43 percent. …97 percent of the breasts we tested harbored bacteria that could make you sick.”

The USDA claims it’s trying to update a system that has been in place since the Eisenhower administration. Food safety advocates are concerned about increased contamination. The public is understandably skeptical: Food recalls and breakouts of food-borne illnesses are common in the news. Bowing to pressure, the USDA tightened some of the rules in a final draft in July but to no avail. Food & Water Watch filed a suit in September to block the implementation of the USDA’s New Poultry Inspection System (NPIS).


11/10/2017 9:18:28 AM

You're posting something that 3 years old. What's the flipping point ?

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