Could this powder replace food forever?


The new revolution in food just might be in powder form. Or at least that’s what Rob Rhinehart, the 25-year-old engineer and creator of the headline-grabbing food-replacement product Soylent, would like us to believe.

Rhinehart, a California engineer, found fitting in three healthy meals a day to be too much of an effort, not to mention expensive. So after scarfing down one too many frozen quesadilla meals, he decided to treat the problem of eating as he would an issue faced at work — he reverse-engineered it.

“I just thought ‘why couldn’t there be a more efficient way to eat well?’” says Rhinehart. “What if we used our understanding of nutritional biochemistry and food processing and tried to make a better staple meal?”

Rhinehart broke down all the nutrients the human body needs to function to their purest form, creating a powder out of them. He began to subsist on Soylent (named with a humorous nod to the 1973 Charlton Heston movie “Soylent Green”), changing the formula according to how he felt. After a month Rhinehart posted a blog entry titled, “How I stopped eating food.” It went viral, and soon techies across the globe were working with Rhinehart to improve the formula.

Soon after, Rhinehart launched a Crowdtilt campaign and made $2.1 million from 20,000 fans eager to try Soylent. He also received $1.5 million in seed funding from Andreessen Horowitz, Lerer Ventures and Y Combinator.

Some media outlets declared Soylent to be the future of food, while others branded it an unappetizing Ensure rip-off.


Black Blade: Not much different than other liquid food replacemnts on the market. Not sure if any have much flavor or can replace "food" over the long haul however.