Tomorrow’s Meatball: What we all could be eating 20 years from now.

Tomorrow's Meatball is a visual exploration of the future of food - exploring the many ways we could be eating in the not-too distant future. The exploration focus on alternative ingredients, technological innovations and uncharted gastronomic territories, that we need to consider to combat our unsustainable appetite for meat and the explosive demand for more food in the future.

Mankind has developed an astonishing food production system. We are able to secure loads of inexpensive food everyday, by producing food on a massive scale far away from where we live.

But our cheap food comes with an additional cost. The system is driven by scale, chemicals and fuel. It is one of the most crucial drivers of climate change, is a critical user of our dwindling supplies of fresh water, it destroys forests and grasslands, causes fish depletion, toxic emissions, requires a lot of ressources for growing, harvesting, transporting and cooling; the process compromises the nutritional value of our food severely and 1/3 of the food produced goes to waste due to spoilage and overproduction.

We used the meatball's shape and size as a canvas for future foods scenarios, because we wanted to visualise complicated research in a simple, fun and familiar way.

There’s hardly any culture that does not cook meatballs - from the Swedish meatball, to Italian/American spaghetti meatballs to spiced up Middle Eastern kofta.

We simply need to find smarter and more efficient ways to produce our food, because, whether we like it or not, our increasing demand for more food is becoming a problem for everyone on the planet. 

According to the UN, we will need 70% more food within the next 35 years, so we need to be smarter and more efficient about the way we produce our food and be more open minded about food diversity, as our global population grows and climate change cuts into the water and land that's available for farming.  

SPACE10 set out to explore how we can produce more food with less and in a more sustainable way then today.

Download all the photos here. The photographers name can be found in the filename.

It's quite difficult to picture that in the near future we will be eating insects or artificial meat.

But, with the increasing demand for food, we need to start considering adding alternative ingredients to our daily menu. You could say that Tomorrow's Meatball gets people a little more familiar with the unfamiliar.

Additional info:

Background

We wanted to trigger a conversation about more efficient and sustainable alternatives to our current production methods and diet.

Approach

Instead of creating a complex report that no one would read we focused on bringing our research to live and tell it as a simple, visual story that engaged people.

We kidnapped IKEA’s iconic meatball as a canvas for our findings. A chef designed 8 meatballs that each represented one of the more sustainable food alternatives we had detected in our research. We created a photo series accompanied with short explanatory captions and released it to the public. 

Aftermath

Tomorrow’s Meatball triggered conversations on a global level about more efficient and sustainable alternatives to our current production methods and diet.

  • Fast Company nominated the project for an Innovation By Design award.
  • International recognition from UN’s World Food Programme
  • The project is being exhibited around the world.

Credits: 

  • Kaave Pour - creative director
  • Bas Van de Poel - concept developer
  • Simon Perez - food designer
  • Lukas Renlund - product photographer
  • Karin Borring - graphic design
  • Simon Caspersen - storyteller
SPACE10
Flæsketorvet 10
1711 Copenhagen V
Denmark