Technology: Plant-Based Food Substitutes

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If your taste for animal products like meat, milk is anything subject to change, then this technology will literally confuse you. In Chile, a company, NotCo, has revolutionised the way our minds get to distinguish between plant and animal products.

According to Matias Muchnick, a commercial engineer and the cofounder of Not Company-NotCo, this technology seeks to address the problem of climate change ( land degradation in particular) caused by the actions of animals kept in excess. Many farming activities that involve use of animals leave the soil open hence much of carbon trapped in the soil escapes to the atmosphere. This is what contributes to the phenomena of deforestation and desertification-perpetual spread of deserts 

So how does it work? Although the methods of combining various crops to come up with a product almost similar to that of an animal remains classified, the science behind it entails basic molecular element blending in both crops and animals. For starters, to come up with NotMilk- milk from different combinations of crops- which is dissimilar to the normal dairy milk, the software could require solutions of mushroom, cane etc.

The combination process is determined by the accuracy of your final product. The human brain has the capacity to distinguish NotMilk from dairy milk, by taste. Period. However, this artificial intelligence software has the capability to create a product, in this case NotMilk, so close to the normal milk that differentiating the two can be tricky!

Moreover, the basis for product-creation is directly linked to availability of appropriate crops’ data which is stored in the computer’s database. This way, making virtual crop combinations to come up with vegetarian substitutes for animal products is made easier.

“We want people to eat better, but without even knowing. That’s the main objective of the Not Company,” Muchnick says

Muchnick hopes that this plant-based food technology, if well adopted all over the world, will help reduce the dependence on animals for milk, meat and even farming- three components which have adversely affected human health in terms of cancerous diseases and changes in climate or global warming.

‘If we were to start from scratch, and we want to figure out the most efficient way to deliver nutrition to the 7.1 billion people on this planet, the answer wouldn’t be animals. Science would tell you to do something different.’ Matias Muchnick co-founder NotCo.

The technology is also being stretched to small businesses and corporations with the primary aim being to strengthen the portion of crops grown all over the world and cut on unhealthy animal products.  Matias Muchnick was interviewed on Talk to Al Jazeera, part of Al jazeera’s business show.

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/App-format// Technology/Tech-wise



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