What’s Cooking in the Kitchen of the Future Melanie Zanoza Bartelme | December 2015, Volume 69, No.12

(Page 6 of 6)

Consumers are also worried about security. The data that allow the smart home to function so effortlessly must be secured in order to elicit consumer trust; no one will be willing to sync their lives into the cloud if they are afraid the cloud is permeable. The kitchen has to be just as safe from hacking as it is from catching fire. And those consumers who don’t trust the security might also not be willing to learn how to use all of the functions these machines offer. Abbott, though, thinks those fears might be misplaced. In her observations of how consumers use kitchens, she’s seen that eventually home cooks figure out what their appliances are capable of—even if they continue to just use them for one thing, like buying a $700 Vitamix blender that can make hot soups and nut milks but only making smoothies in it.

Ultimately, customers have the final say when it comes to creating a kitchen that suits their needs, says Hartsmanngruber. “They have to be able to control the home, not be controlled by it,” he attests. With smart kitchen technology in its nascent stage, there is a true opportunity for food manufacturers to get into this game and collaborate with appliance makers to make sure that their ingredients and products continue to have a place in the kitchen of tomorrow. There are an astounding number of ways in which today’s technology might evolve, and food companies should be following these developments closely to focus on creating packaging, prepared foods, and meal components that consumers will find easy to pop into whatever heating element ends up in tomorrow’s kitchen.

Online Exclusive: Countertop Cooking
Read more about the devices offering today’s cooks convenience and control at ift.org/food-technology/current-issue.


Melanie Zanoza Bartelme is associate editor of Food Technology magazine (mbartelme@ift.org


Bergen, J. 2011. “Bio Robot Refrigerator will keep your food cool in the year 2050.” geek.com, May 2.

Daily Mail. 2010. “Revealed: The hi-tech fridge of the future that will tell you what to have for dinner.” Daily Mail, Dec. 25.

Euromonitor. 2015. “Home Goods and the Internet of Things: The Real Value of the Smart Home Industry” webinar. Euromonitor International, Nov. 4.

Ferdman, R. 2015. “The Chipotle effect: Why America is obsessed with fast casual food.” The Washington Post, Feb. 2.

GE. 2014. “From Ice Blocks to Compressors to Magnets: The Next Chapter in Home Refrigeration.” Press release, March 13. GE Appliances, Louisville, Ky. geappliances.com.

López-Alt. 2015. “Can Cinder, the World’s Most Precise Griddle, Replace Sous-Vide?” Serious Eats, Oct. 9.

Lubick, N. 2014. “Will there be kitchens in 2050?” FutureFood 2050, Dec. 15.

Mintel. 2015. Consumer Trends 2015. Mintel Group, Chicago. mintel.com.

NPD. 2014. “Coffee Pod Machines Make Room for the Newest Kids in the Kitchen Pantry—Soda Makers and Sriracha Sauce.” Press release, Dec. 2. NPD Group, Port Washington, N.Y. npd.com.

Perlow, J. 2015. “Freescale’s Radio Frequency Oven:The End of the Microwave?” ZDNet, June 22.

Seifer, D. 2014. “Update: Is Science Fiction Entering Our Kitchens?” The NPD Group Blog, April 16.

Severson, K. 2010. “Kitchen Gadgets Take the Fast-Food Mentality Into the Home.” The New York Times, March 17.

Stone, M. 2014. “This Is What the Kitchen of the Future Could Look Like.” Business Insider, May 1.

UNEP. 2015. “Food Waste: The Facts.” United Nations Environment Programme, Oct. 16.

Wirthman, L. 2013. “Food Industry Upgrades Include Freezers That Detect Expiration Dates.” Forbes, June 12.