Cocoon, the fish and meat maker, is the winner of the Electrolux Design Lab 2009 competition. The appliance will supposedly grow meat and fish from prepackaged “genetically modified” meat and fish. Of course, we are talking about something in the future and not something that is expected to be sold anytime soon in your local Wal-Mart.
The design lab competition ultimate winner was Swedish design student Rickard Hederstierna from Lund Institute of Technology in Sweden, the designer of the Cocoon, meat and fish maker. Other design competition finalists included such items as a refrigerator that transports food, a flying water catcher, and a grass lawn chair washing machine.
What exactly does it do? It cooks meat and fish and also can create them.
How does it do this?
Similar to heating popcorn in a microwave, Cocoon prepares genetically engineered and pre-packaged meat and fish dishes by heating muscle cells identified by radio frequency identification (RFID) signals. The signals detect the specific dish and then suggest the required cooking time. This process uses science to create food…
Apparently the genetically modified prepackaged food, can be “grown” in the cocoon during cooking, like microwave popcorn. The process isn’t like the food generators on Star Trek. It doesn’t create food out of thin air, nor will it clone food from natural fish and meat sources. If it isn’t the genetically modified meat or fish, you can’t grow it.
That means that third world societies that are used to catching fish, or raising their own meat will still have to follow the same tried and true methods of acquiring these items. That is assuming that pollution and over fishing doesn’t destroy fish stock and environmental changes don’t destroy livestock farms.
Industrial societies can simply purchase the genetically modified meat at the local grocery store and create a lovely meal for four out of meat cuts that would formerly have fed one or two. In many ways the Cocoon will help provide food for the world’s growing population without requiring larger farms or increased fishing.
The Cocoon certainly isn’t ready for store shelves anytime soon. There is more of a feeling of “and then a miracle happens” to the “genetically modified” meat and fish than a pending scientific reality.