David Bosshart: "There is no way back to the old normal"


The Corona crisis is becoming a catalyst for new forms of cultivation,, such as urban farming and meat from cell cultures. But the technical infrastructure is still missing for many things. In an interview with the "Lebensmittel Zeitung", David Bosshart explains how Covid-19 has changed the way we eat.

David Bosshart

Lebensmittel-Zeitung: Mr Bosshart, how has Corona changed the way we eat?

David Bosshart: In home offices, people are now eating more pasta, snacking, and buying more frozen food and take-away in addition to tinned supplies. Food is more highly valued.

Is this a sustainable trend?

There will be no return to the old normal. Fortunately. Because this was a deeply sick normal. Look at the slaughterhouses or the monocultures. If the planet depends on unhealthy practices, its people cannot be healthy.

Another consequence is that cities must become more self-sufficient. What does that mean?

It is primarily about urban farming and local food. Ten percent of the demand could be met with this.

What about meat?

First, we will see plant proteins, in particular, become more fundamental. In the future, cell cultures will also be an important approach, by the way, also for dairy products. Production requires little space; there are no monocultures for animal feed and no CO2 emissions. It will probably take years before synthetic meat or cheese become mass products. There is a rift between technical maturity and social acceptance.

What role will food retail play in the future?

Supermarkets are historical phenomena. Food must be redeveloped from a much more innovative agricultural culture. Direct sales will increase.

Do we even have the technical infrastructure for this?

Not yet. In the future, we need more cloud-based, AI-controlled, fully automated systems for cultivation, logistics and distribution. Otherwise, it's too expensive. In addition, strong supporting data of machines and people is necessary.

Do customers want this data published?

This has also changed with Corona. Organics, safety and health are becoming increasingly important. People are afraid and will therefore give up their private data.