Protein Patches & Meals in Pills - Is This The Future of Food?

Stick-on patches and pills could soon be replacing food, claims a new report forecasting our diets of the future.

Jellyfish suppers, algae milk, insect protein and intravenous drips are among the other wacky trends set to dominate our diets in just 150 years time.

And of course more carnivorous foodies will be able to flock to the supermarkets and buy lab-grown meat for a quick and eco-friendly protein hit.

All of the above may even be delivered by drones, claims the report - commissioned by Sainsbury’s - which explores the way our relationship with food is set to transform in the coming decades.

After scrutinising trends, scientific studies and environmental implications, experts now believe they have accurately predicted how consumer demands will change.

They argue there will be a particular emphasis on personalised diets which will give consumers the option to consume nutrients via patches, pills and fortified foods.

In just five years time, doctors may begin prescribing food advice as part of their service in a bid to tackle exploding obesity rates.

Plant scientist James Wong said: “The rise in obesity and associated degenerative diseases has been driven by a complex range of factors, some of which we are only beginning to understand. However, what it has undoubtedly sparked is a growing interest in the impact diet has on health and in particular is the functional benefits food can have above and beyond their vitamin and mineral content.”

The report also notes that consumers are now more aware of animal welfare, environmental impact and our health than ever before.

It adds that current trends are not sustainable for the expanding global population that is predicted to increase to 9 billion in 30 years, and more than 11 billion in the next 150 years.

Furthermore, the demand for meat and dairy will inevitably plummet as taste buds give way to concerns surrounding sustainability.

By 2025, a suspected 25% of Britons will be committing to totally meat-free diets while 50% will consider themselves flexitarian.

Paul Shapiro, author of Clean Meat, said: “It’s tough to predict 30 years into the future, but we do know this: we’re going to have to produce a lot more food with fewer resources in 2050 than we do today.

“The thought that we’ll produce meat (which is very resource-intensive) the way we do today is unrealistic. Far more likely is that we’ll be making meat from plants, as well as culturing it from animal cells. That’s not to say we won’t have any meat from slaughtered animals, but it will no longer be the dominant form of meat.”

It is thought that the current trend for nut-based milks will be replaced by algae milk with seaweed expected to be hailed a vegan plant of the future.

By 2169, it could even be entirely normal for people to hold details of their nutritional and health information in a personal microchip which would be embedded into their skin.

This advanced technology would trigger an alert to the supermarket which would deliver by drone food and drink to accommodate their health.

James Wong concluded: “For decades, diets have been simplified to include core ingredients that provided sustenance, and with that we witnessed a decline in the varieties of some ingredients. However, what we are seeing now – especially with the explosion of plant-based foods – is that diversity in food is returning to the British diet, including ancient crops like quinoa and south-east Asian staples such as jackfruit.”

Insects and jellyfish are also predicted to it the mainstream as consumers desperately search for more eco-friendly and sustainable protein.

The report says: “Contrary to the dystopian future drained of humanity that is imagined by many, the combined force of personalised optimisation and farming impossible environments carve a path for how we can cut food waste, bring deserts back to life and celebrate our humanity through the act of eating. This will bring about a renaissance of planet Earth by reconnecting to our environment, and to each other.”