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5 Ways Food Technology Is Changing How We Eat

If you're old enough to have watched TV shows like The Jetsons or Star Trek, you’ve always known that technology would impact what you ate for dinner. Well, fast forward to 2014 and food technology has indeed had a notable impact on how and what we eat. Here are five budding food technologies on the verge of changing the way we eat.

1.       Vertical Gardening: Do you enjoy gardening, but lack a green thumb? Well, you don’t need any gardening experience to use Tower Garden. Tower Garden simplifies traditional gardening, using a unique vertical garden growing system that makes it easy to grow your own fruits and vegetables at home. It’s smarter than traditional gardening too! Because of its unique aeroponic technology and vertical design, Tower Garden uses less than 10% of the water and land required by traditional, soil-based agriculture. Not only do vertical gardens do more with less land; they also allow food producers to grow crops in cities next to consumers, eliminating transportation costs.

2.       Herb Growing Aqua Farm: Delicious gourmet mushrooms made from old coffee grounds - impossible? Think again. Founded in 2009 in the kitchen of a fraternity house, Back to the Roots creates sustainable, easy-to-use mushroom-growing kits, as well as an herb-growing aqua farm.  Their most recent product, The AquaFarm, is a self-cleaning fish tank that grows food! The AquaFarm combines a 3-gallon fish tank with a vegetable and herb grow bed into one close-loop system. So how exactly does it work? The waste from the fish is pumped through an inner tube, which helps provide nutrients for the plants. The plant roots act as a biofilter where beneficial bacteria break down the harmful ammonia in the waste into nitrites and then finally nitrates, which are absorbed as food by the plants. In other words, the plants actually clean the water for the fish! But the best part about it is all of this is happening without any soil or chemical fertilizers.

3.       Year-round Hydroponics: Could this be the future of farming? PodPonics, produces local food in urban centers, using an approach that does not require arable land. The PodPonics system utilizes advanced hydroponics, proprietary lighting, irrigation and nutrient technology with process control, allowing the company to grow lettuce and other leafy greens year-round, without soil, sunlight or pesticides. Using hydroponics, the crops are grown in vertical tiers inside former shipping containers, which range from 320 to 450 square feet. Each pod can produce the equivalent of nearly an acre of crops. Their growing system reduces cost, improves product quality and creates local jobs while answering the strong and growing demand for locally produced, natural foods.

4.       Virtual Farmers Market: Fresh, local food delivered right to your door; sounds nice doesn’t it? Good Eggs, now makes that dream a reality. Good Eggs is one of a handful of companies that are tapping into the local food movement and making it more accessible with technology. Good Eggs is a website and delivery service that lets you order food from local farms and artisanal food makers. With Good Eggs, shoppers can browse through dozens of virtual stands, searching by the type of item (dairy, meats, baked goods, produce and so forth) or by farm. It’s like a grocery store, but with better food, less hassle and more heart.

5.       Veggie Machines:  A trip to the vending machine will usually yield some pretty unhealthy and unsatisfying snacks. But if Farmer's Fridge has its way, meals from a vending machine could mean organic meats and cheeses and healthy salads full of locally grown veggies, fruit, beans, and seeds. The Chicago based company is revolutionizing the vending machine concept, offering delicious gourmet meals via state-of-the-art automated kiosks. Each kiosk utilizes best-in-class vending technology with a touch-screen design to create an innovative way to grab a healthy meal in mere seconds.

Food technology is inspiring people to change the way they think about the food they eat, where it comes from and how it is produced. What do you think about recent food technologies? Share your comments below!


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