Your Digital Diet


As we have previously been taught throughout this course, the food industry is dynamic. This can be seen through the change in how we order food, for example from physical stores to online delivery to the possibility of drones or replenishment buttons. [1] However, the latest trends emphasize sustainability and the use of natural resources. There is no doubt that this has the potential to massively disrupt the industry with food sources coming from insects, seaweed, algae and other similar supplies. [2]

One other technology that is expected to revolutionize a range of industries is 3D printing. Many of you will have witnessed examples such as bionic prosthetics, in other words – printing an amputee a new arm or leg. [3] One of the key ideas within 3D printing is the enabling of personal customization (of each arm or leg).

Next, it is also worth mentioning that ideas have been documented by various innovative companies with the aim to help solve problems such as the growing global population and poverty through 3D printing. We have seen a dramatic increase in development in Less Economically Developed Countries (LEDCs) including Africa. Manufacturing is an area in which Africa hopes it can show progress over the coming years, facilitating domestic production of all sorts of machines. Going straight into digital manufacturing would mean that Africa would by-pass the industrial revolution that virtually all MEDCs went through. [4]

Combing the topics discussed above, namely; the dynamic food industry and 3D printing. Results in the futuristic (or not so futuristic possibility of your digital diet. This idea consists of customizing your diet requirements and being able to print your food. For example, one feature would be to scan one’s DNA to generate a personalized diet chart, including warning signs such as low sodium that the individual is able to act upon. Obviously everyone would require a 3D printer at home, which arguably is unfeasible in today’s world. But just how far off is this idea? People would be able to satisfy all nutritional recommended intake and be much healthier. [2]

There are many other implications that a digital diet has, can you name any?

Sources:

[1] http://www.theguardian.com/technology/2015/jul/28/amazon-autonomous-drones-only-airspace-package-delivery

[2] http://www.foodnavigator.com/Science/New-technologies-to-shape-the-future-of-food-supply

[3] http://enablingthefuture.org/tag/3d-printed-prosthetics/

[4] http://www.theworldfolio.com/news/can-manufacturing-go-digital-in-africa/3297/

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