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Science & Technology

Device can make broccoli taste like chocolate

By T.K. Randall
October 14, 2016 · Comment icon 19 comments

What if all food tasted delicious ? Image Credit: CC BY-SA 2.0 distillated
A new invention called Taste Buddy has the potential to make any food taste like any other food.
Developed by scientists at City University in London, the ingenious contraption works by emitting thermal and electrical signals which stimulate the taste buds.

While currently restricted to producing only sweet and salty tastes, the technology could one day change the way anything tasted so that, for example, broccoli might taste like chocolate.
"What started out as a fun engineering experiment has now led to something much more exciting with the potential to have a positive social impact," said Professor Adrian Cheok. "The Taste Buddy could eventually help save lives, by allowing people to switch to healthier food choices."

"Many children hate the taste of vegetables. So I knew that when I became an engineer, I wanted to make a device that could allow children to eat vegetables that taste like chocolate."

The prototype device will be available for members of the public to try out for themselves at The Big Bang UK Young Scientists and Engineers Fair in March next year.

Source: | Comments (19)

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Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #10 Posted by Goodf3llow 7 years ago
I'll believe it when I taste it...
Comment icon #11 Posted by South Alabam 7 years ago
If they could make liver to taste like filet mignon, I seriously doubt I would eat it.
Comment icon #12 Posted by ChaosRose 7 years ago
I already like broccoli, but I'm considering the implications. If I could make healthy food taste like chocolate, I'd certainly eat more of it. 
Comment icon #13 Posted by ChaosRose 7 years ago
That would be awesome.
Comment icon #14 Posted by ChaosRose 7 years ago
I was just thinking about how no one actually knew what chicken tasted like in the Matrix, because so many things tasted the same.
Comment icon #15 Posted by ChaosRose 7 years ago
Don't be a killjoy. We all know that in 5 years they're gonna find out it's a toxic carcinogen. We just wanna live in happyland for a little while. Happyland... Where tofu tastes like steak and lima beans taste like chocolate.
Comment icon #16 Posted by DieChecker 7 years ago
This would only work for me if they could fix the smell at the same time. Even if the broccoli/liver/asparagus tasted great, the smell would prevent me from getting it anywhere near my mouth.
Comment icon #17 Posted by rashore 7 years ago
While it's interesting that they figured out that heat and electricity can stimulate taste buds to sweet and salty... it's a far cry from making one food taste like another. And I have to imagine it's difficult to eat while holding a metal tab on your tongue.
Comment icon #18 Posted by Parsec 7 years ago
Agreed, but this is also a possible step forward towards a real food replicator! 
Comment icon #19 Posted by rashore 7 years ago
How do you figure? Would replicated food have the tec in it to distribute heat and electrical impulses? Or do you think this very basic research could potentially lead to some cool ion tec? Or both? And it's one thing to trigger taste bud receptors. Neat fact- all taste buds can taste everything, but there are greater and lesser concentrations of receptor cells that are sensitive to specific molecular and ion interactions. That's why there seems to be regions in the tongue. And why sometimes when your tongue gets overwhelmed by one thing, like bitter or sweet- because then all the taste buds a... [More]

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