Powder to the people

by EAT ART collective

Powder to the People is the title for a long term research into the role that industrial food additives could play in domestic kitchens.

The food industry’s legit goal is to make profit. For this they invest in research. Innovation takes place if it can save costs or sell better. Since the industrial revolution, the accumulated innovations have drifted the industrial kitchen so far from the home-cooking-kitchen, that unschooled cooks no longer understand what it takes to produce processed foods. And the food industry saw no interest in educating consumers to understand what was happening. This has created a mutual state of mistrust and misunderstanding. By now, it seems impossible to have a normal conversation on development and production of food. However, if we plan to feed 3 billion more people in 2050, we might need to consider the use of some kinds of advanced technologies in our food system and culture. The potentials of industrial food processes are too important to be left to hypochondric American parents and molecular chefs with a fetish for circus foods.

As engineers, thinkers and food fanatics, Eat Art Collective sees a future where semi-industrial food production play an important part in feeding the planet. If we, the people, can make our own educated choices in the longevity of our bread, the volume of our chicken, the nutritional value of our rice and the price of our taste, then the overal effect on the planet might surprise us all.

As artists, we are a critical party outside the shared battlefield of industry, consumer and government. In a time where we trust Youtube more than doctors, friends more than magazines and most of all value our gut feeling more than industry leaders, it is hard to find support for well-considered shades of gray. It seems only more articles and journals will not solve the problem. By creating opportunities for people to get their hands dirty and convince themselves, we create places of transformation that can be petri-dishes for public debate. We opt for a method of research in which we actively involve people during the development, pursuing a mix of indigenous and scientific knowledge, but also aware that failing in public makes us human and thus more trustworthy. By mixing information, criticism and personal experience, we lay a foundation for opinions that have shades of gray and can still resist the tidal wave of public opinion.

We invite all possibles partners and anyone interested in collaborations on this mission to contact us through info@eatartcollective.nl.

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Photos by Anouk Bouten.

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