Festive feasts of 2050
Food has always been a part of celebrations and rituals around the world, across cultures. Although over time cultures and traditions blend, it takes time for them to completely change into something else. Most people might not even pay much attention to the transition.
As the world continues to evolve, our festive feasts are likely to undergo some changes as well. While some traditional dishes and ingredients may still be present, our tables will likely be filled with more sustainable climate-conscious options. Gone will be the days of gluttonous feasts filled with unsustainable meat and dairy products. This will not be because people won’t like them. People have not changed inherently in the past 10 000 years. They will choose foods that feel familiar and taste great.
Here we are as in olden days, happy golden days of yore
What we will see in their place during the festive season, is comfort food that tastes as delicious as before. It will probably quite decadent too, but it will be based on something else than factory farming. We can expect to see a proliferation of plant-based dishes and more modern creations like lab-grown meat and dairy products.
People will still eat meat, cheese and dairy, but we won’t be slaughtering or exploiting animals for them. In addition to being more ethical, food will also be more climate-conscious. This will likely manifest in the form of locally-sourced ingredients, organic produce, and sustainable plant-based options.
The traditional foods we crave for those special moments of the year will still be there, but the way we make them will change. New kinds of protein sources like Solein® will be key ingredients in making the shift to sustainability. Solein is a versatile and nutritious microbial protein ingredient that can replace animal and plant protein in food, and consumers might not even notice.
An opportunity to cook a new world of festive dishes
Why are we likely to see an increase in the consumption of these foods? For one, they can be produced more efficiently and sustainably than traditional animal-based products. Solein requires less land, water, and other resources to produce, making them a more environmentally friendly option. In addition, they can be produced in a controlled environment, reducing the risk of foodborne illness and other contaminants.
But the benefits of microbial foods extend beyond just the environment. These completely new kind of ingredients can be a source of new foods, flavours and textures, opening up a world of culinary possibilities. There will be new foods, cooking trends and ways of consuming food that might be completely foreign to us here in the 2020s. And as the global population continues to grow, microbial foods may be an important source of protein and other nutrients for a growing world.
The most important part is who you are celebrating with
Despite these changes, our festive feasts will still be a time for coming together and celebrating with loved ones. The traditions and customs associated with these festivities might slowly and unwittingly change over time as the dishes on our tables evolve. The important thing is that the festivities have meaning for the ones participating in them. So while they may look a little different in the coming decades, they will still be a time for connection and celebration. The food will stay delicious, but the way it arrives on our banquet tables will change. No need to raise a pig to get a ham on the table.
We are developing new ways to use Solein constantly, and we are finding that it is an endlessly functional ingredient. It could be a core component of festive foods from any culture and provide merry moments for the world’s growing population.
Every tradition had a beginning
So as we gather around the holiday table in the coming decades, don’t be surprised if you see some dishes made of yet unfamiliar ingredients. Traditions are not as immutable as we might think. Turkeys made their way to Christmas tables from the 1950s onwards and Japan has celebrated the end of the year with fried chicken since the 1970s. There will certainly be traditions that will have their start in the 2020s too.
Embrace the change and enjoy the sustainable and delicious options that the future has to offer. The passage of time is funny in that way that you might not notice the changes at all.