The Adler Planetarium in Chicago invited Dr. Sian Proctor, Meals for Mars Cookbook author to talk ways of creating sustainable food economies on Earth at their Adler After Dark event, the planetarium's uniquely entertaining summer summer series.
The evening's theme: Taste of Space
Dr. Proctor shared her experience in the NASA-funded HI-SEAS Mars Mission (check out her "Eat Like a Martian" video), which opened up a thoughtful audience discussion about the connections between space exploration and sustainable foods. "Most audiences I speak with never think to leverage space-food technologies, such as freeze-dried foods, as an effort to live more sustainably on Earth," says Proctor.
"Adopting the use of freeze-dried fruits, meats, and vegetables creates a more sustainable pantry." - Sian Proctor
There are significant costs involved with packaging, transporting, and shelf-life of typical frozen foods. Freeze-dried foods creates shelf-stable products that don't require additional energy to maintain. The 'a-ha' moment comes once people really begin to understand the large scale impacts and energy efficiencies that come with freeze-dried foods.
Think differently about what's in your freezer
"My main goal was to have people leave feeling empowered and that their food choices can make a difference here on Earth," says Proctor. "Adopting the use of freeze-dried fruits, meats, and vegetables creates a more sustainable pantry." Proctor wants people to re-define the word 'fresh' as being locally harvested products and not items flown in from around the world.