DARPA to Explore on-Site Food Production Based on Microbial Science

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The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) has launched an effort to reduce the military’s logistical burdens associated with food transportation.

DARPA said Thursday its Cornucopia program aims to enable food production on a site when demanded, as well as indefinite sustenance dependent on water and energy sufficiency.

The program’s resulting technology would use raw resources to produce microbe-based food for warfighters.

“Cornucopia seeks to produce from air, water and electricity – with minimal supplementation – a range of microbial-origin, nutritious foodstuffs that taste good and offer complete nutrition for military applications ranging from troops in austere locations to civilians and troops during humanitarian assistance and disaster relief operations,” said Molly Jahn, program manager at DARPA’s Defense Sciences Office.

Cornucopia will explore domesticated microbes for human consumption, tailorability and system demonstrations in austere conditions and humanitarian relief scenarios.

Companies, research laboratories and universities wanting to take part in Cornucopia may submit proposals and input for the program, whose proposers day will occur on Dec. 15th.

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