According to a UN World population report released in June of 2017, the world’s population of 7.6 billion is expected to reach 9.8 billion by 2050. In addition, the UN predicted that the food problem of humanity will be bigger problem not long after. While looking for a solution of the food crisis is a key point, future alternative foods are emerging as the new food industry.
The first thing that comes to mind when you think of alternative food probably isn’t “insects” but the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) suggested using edible insects as one of the ways to solve food shortages. Insects are an excellent source of nutrients because they are rich in fiber and minerals. Also, insects are efficient to produce disperse. Currently, about 30 percent of the world's land area is used for raising livestock and 70 percent of farmland is used for growing feed of livestock. Insects in contrast grow fast and the space that they occupy is small in comparison to livestock. Therefore, insects can be produced efficiently. However, people's negative biases about insects are seen as barriers to progress in the edible insects industry. Also, it is necessary to study how insects use as a main food source affects the human body.
Another alternative food is cultured meat, also known as in vitro meat. Cultured meat is meat produced in a laboratory by growing animal cells. Methane emitted by livestock accounts for 15 percent of greenhouse gas emissions (GHG). Also, animal feces negatively influences the environment. On the other hand, cultured meat does not hurt the environment and does not have ethical problems about slaughter. The first cultured meat tasting was held in the U.K in 2013. In vitro meat, made by Professor Mark Post of Maastricht University, is similar to real meat. The price of cultured meat is not burdensome to general consumers because it is lower than real meat. However, there remains the problem of the health safety of the consumer’s heart. If the aversion to in vitro meat is eliminated, it will capture the mind of the consumers
Alternative food is still developing. The importance of alternative food is increasing day by day because food will be scarce in the near future. . Alternative food may still be unfamiliar to us but if we get rid of our prejudices and take more interests in this kind of food, we will be closer to solving the world’s food shortage problem.