It appears that our ever-increasing awareness of climate change and sustainability is impacting our food choices. Studies show we’re willing to switch to plant-based meats, for the sake of the planet. Although, with the food industry evolving and experimenting, it begs the question, just how adventurous are we?
Would you eat a lab-grown fish? An edible water bottle? What would your reaction be if you saw algae on the menu?
To determine what Australians are willing to eat, Readly, the all-you-can-read service surveyed 1062 Aussies on just what was off-limits when it comes to what we will eat. Over half of the participants declared that it is important for them to be aware of what they eat. 85% of those asked said that they were open to new food experiences and in following the trend of sustainability and the impact on our global footprint, many of these choices were aligned with what was deemed futuristic or alternate food options.
Whilst 9 in 10 Australians aged 40 to 49 indicated that they were keen to try new cuisines, it was the younger generation of 18-29-year olds who were most likely to stomach the alternate menus options on offer, offering well above the average score for each of the options presented.
So, just what are we willing to eat? According to the survey, 1 in 4 Australians are willing to try lab-grown meat and fish, with this figure being 1 in 3 for those aged under 30. Just over 1 in 5 would have a go at eating an edible water bottle if it was offered with this being the food item most under 40 would be willing to try and conversely the over 60s would steer away from the most.
Liz Mckenzie said she and her husband tried eating an edible straw when they were in Hong Kong.
“My husband also runs a business that uses a lot of 3D printing. He has 3D printers at home too and I’m sure it wouldn’t faze us to eat 3D printed food at all,” said Mckenzie.
Skye Blackburn founded Australia’s first insect protein farm, the Edible Bug Shop. According to her, Australians now want local, nutrient-dense and sustainable foods to feed their families and edible insects tick all of the boxes.
“This year we’ve had great success launching our new retail brand Circle Harvest into stores around Australia. Science week is all about future food and we’ve had a great response from schools around Australia willing to include insect protein products like chips, pasta and granolas on school menus,” said Blackburn.
Whilst 77% of Australians aged 60 and over said they were willing to try new cuisines, this age group weren’t as keen to explore the alternate and futuristic menus. On average when surveyed, no more than 1 in 4 at most were willing to try any of the options listed, with this dropping to 1 in 20 on numerous occasions.
3D printed food also garnered the interest of 16% of Aussies but older Australians are sceptical of this with only 5% recording a willingness compared to 1 in 3 of those aged under 29.
Top 6 things Australians are willing to eat.
1. Lab-created meat and fish (25 %)
2. Edible water bottles (23 %)
3. DNA-based diet (20 %)
4. Algae (19 %)
5. 3D-printed food (16 %)
6. Insects (16 %)
Jo Taranto works with communities around Australia and particularly food security and local regenerative food habits.
“I personally have tried insects (mealworms and crickets) and think they play an important role in future food trends,” said Taranto.
The cold weather in most parts of Australia coinciding with EOFY celebrations is the closest thing that we’ll get to snowy Christmas vibes. And if you’re in dire need of some festive cheer after the first six months of 2023, grab your ugly sweater and head to your nearest Red Rooster for Xmas in July deals.
From June 29 – July 31, 2023, Red Rooster is serving up free food items, a chance to win $10,000 or one of 10 merch packs valued at $400 and other fun prizes. All you have to do is sign up as a Red Royalty member and spend $5 on at a location near you or online.
Each week there’ll be new delicious deals and prizes to win. The week one deals have already dropped and they’re looking pretty tasty. You can get access to them via your Red Royalty account. The more you purchase, the more chances you have to win.
Spoiler alert: you can get 10 chicken nuggets for free, right now. Brb running to Red Rooster.