I wrote the following on The Universe Today on their article on "NASA Looks at 3-D Food Printer for Star Trek-like Replicator''
Read more: http://www.universetoday.com/102328/nasa-looks-at-3-d-food-printer-...
I think this is all a waste of money and very strange that normally very strictly economical NASA pay for its development. It is more efficient to feed of the 30 year nutrient storage as and when needed without having to process the food any further. Why send unprocessed food to outer space when processing of it beyond the most basic in terms of just extending shelf live is an inefficient frivolity?
Asides from plain mixing, heating or cooling why waste time and energy processing food when all that mechanical work can be carried out on Earth saving astronauts the trouble and having to mechanically service an unnecessary machine or its food storage feed? Why does it have to be a pizza lookalke or equally replicate the morphology of some other food item when its not really what it is and to make it so is purely an aesthetically but falsely tangible construct? This is in no way recreating the food replicators on Star Trek where the real thing is fictionally copied to the molecular scale.
If some people can't cope with the high protein of insects by eating them as they are cooked but without changing their form, then their problem is that they were culturally taught as such as children and only that. NASA and the other jointly space faring organisations ought to look into obtaining their protein from leguminous sprouts anyway. Over 20% content in lentils and more so in soya bean sprouts and all you need to to do is add water and wait for a certain known period. Apart from we already knowing that legumes sprout easily in no gravity I surely empathise with astronauts being sent their food treats such as apples from someone's orchard, an event I read that did actually happen