Future Food: What Will Our Fridges Look Like In 2030?
STORY: Annette Tan
07 June 2022
It’s 2030. A comet has hit a large swathe of land where cattle is reared. Bruce Willis is out of commission and therefore unable to blast the asteroid before it hits Earth. The comet, thankfully small, hits a swathe of land where cattle is reared and roam. The world’s supply of meat is severely affected. But that’s not a problem, because in 2030 plant-based meat has become a staple.
Based on a report on The Future Of Food by Synthesis, a consultancy firm specialising in human-centred data science, people in 2030 are likely to consume more plant-based meat than we do now.
In the first of three imagined scenarios in Synthesis’ Future Of Food: Menu of 2030 report, there is a 34% likelihood of plant-based meat becoming a staple while real meat continues to dominate.
A second scenario offers a 37% chance that people eat plant-based meat at least twice a week (as compared to two days a year today).
Meanwhile, the likelihood that cell-cultured meat will take over the consumption of real meat as global trade is disrupted stands at 7%. Just to be clear, there were no projections of an asteroid decimating cattle farmland in 2030.
The contents of our refrigerators then would look vastly different in 2030 from what they do today. According to a 2016 article titled What Will We Eat in 2030, the author Tim Benton, professor of Population Ecology and UK champion for global food security at the University of Leeds, posits that “the emergence of localism, wholefoods, organic, artisanal and ‘real food’ movements” is a sign that more people will want to eat a healthy diet that is less intensive and wasteful of resources.
Our diets in the next decade may include more fruit and vegetables, whole grains and vegetarian food and alternatives such as artificial meat, soy products and even insects. We will still eat meat, he wrote, “but perhaps more like our parents and grandparents, see it as a treat to savour every few days”.
Our focus on sustainable sources will also see eco-friendlier packaging, more ethically farmed and environmentally friendly produce, and even foods customised to suit our genetics and the microbes in our guts thanks to the emerging field of personalised nutrition.
So what will the insides of our fridges look like in 2030? Here’s what we imagine based on findings by the reports quoted above:
- More plant-based and cultured meats
- Ethically farmed and locally sourced fresh produce
- Refillable storage to reduce the use of single-use packaging
- Vitamin and food supplements tailored to our individual needs
- Special compartments for dry-aging meat
- Special compartments for fermentation