Your New Lifestyle/Future Feast; Your Bionic Future; Scientific American Presents; by Kling; 4 Page(s)
SNEEZING GENTLY, you ease open the refrigerator door to take stock after returning to town from your summer home. The situation isn't so grim after all: there's that romaine lettuce you bought six months ago, still looking fresh and crisp. A chunk of Parmesan, picked up-what year is this again? And down on the bottom shelf: vegetables of various vintages and, there it is, that nice piece of cooked, shrink-wrapped synthetic chicken. It has been in your refrigerator longer than some of your neckties have been in your closet. Just as you realize that the scratchiness in the back of your throat is not going away, you come across a little bottle of antiviral salad dressing. That clinches it. Chicken Caesar salad it is.
Although that scenario may sound a little strange, tomorrow's world of high-tech foods would most likely seem as fantastic to us as microwaves, frozen meals and today's wide selection of produce would have appeared to a cook just 50 years ago, let alone 100. Many of the details of how food will taste and look, and how it will be packaged and prepared, will depend on that most elusive of intangibles, consumer tastes and preferences. Nevertheless, several trends seem to be gathering momentum, offering glimpses of what and how we might be eating early in the next century.