back to article Reg hack prepares to live off wondergloop Soylent

In the latest attempt by denizens of Silicon Valley to free themselves from the shackles of normal life, a startup has created a meal replacement substance named "Soylent", and this Reg hack is going to spend the next seven days trying to live entirely off the stuff. Soylent Corporation launched in May with a funding campaign …

COMMENTS

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  1. SuperTim

    Sounds like Complan...

    Except repackaged for the morbidly curious sickos who think they may be eating people.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Sounds like Complan...

      Soylent Green is people?

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Nooooooo

      The ocean's dying. Plankton's dying. It's people. Soylent Green is made out of people. They're making our food out of people. Next thing, they'll be breeding us like cattle for food. You've gotta tell them. You've gotta tell them!

      You tell everybody. Listen to me. You've gotta tell 'em! SOYLENT GREEN IS PEOPLE! We gotta stop them! Somehow! Listen! Listen to me… PLEASE!!!

      1. TechnicalBen Silver badge
        Trollface

        Re: Nooooooo

        Darn thermal dynamics! We are going to make people food out of people!

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Living off it for 3 months?

      Put a steak in front of him and watch him cry like a baby.

    4. Great Bu

      Re: Sounds like Complan...

      It's exactly like enteral feeding stuff only much more expensive.......

      You can get complete feeds for people who are unable to eat for a lot less than this stuff, a quick google gets you:

      http://www.allegromedical.com/dietary-supplements-c522/nutren-1-0-fiber-p548658.html

      24 'drinks' for $31, nutritionally complete including fibre.....

  2. Miek
    Linux

    Soylent = Soya + Lentils ?

    1. SuperTim

      Yes

      I believe that was the portmanteau.

      1. Harvey Trowell

        Re: Yes

        Well in that case, he can go fuchims, 'cos that soylent looks blonast. Fischip for suptoni, I think...

    2. TeeCee Gold badge
      Mushroom

      Crikey! Just thinking about living on that is making me fart uncontrollably.

      1. Glenn Charles
        Devil

        Don't worry

        It's brainfarts.

  3. John Colman
    Go

    The big 3

    There are 3 important tests that you need to do to verify this as a food substitute:

    1) Does it have the same effect as a kebab after a night of booze?

    2) Does it have the same effect as a bacon sarnie the morning after a night of booze?

    3) Can you have it for lunch at your desk without looking like a plonker?

    One more thing to watch out for, the after effects of an all Soylent diet. There's no polite way to put this, but how horrific is it on the way out?

  4. Neil Barnes Silver badge
    Boffin

    If you can't fry it, it's not food

    So that's the obvious experiment...

    1. Michael Hawkes
      Coat

      Re: If you can't fry it, it's not food

      It's still new, give it time. It probably hasn't made its way to Scotland yet.

      1. El Zed

        Re: If you can't fry it, it's not food

        It's still new, give it time. It probably hasn't made its way to Scotland yet.

        Ach, this isn't even a challenge, you can obviously use it as a batter so we'd probably use it to coat something else a bit more exotic (Mint Poppets anyone?) before the obligatory inadvisable deep frying...

        Mind you, for the record, Google deep fried Oreos, deep fried twinkies, deep fried snickers.. The US also has a history of slapping batter on some foodstuffs not normally associated with the antient and noble art of deep frying and just going for it.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: If you can't fry it, it's not food

          Definitely suggesting deep fried mars bars + soylent. :D

        2. Miek
          Linux

          Re: If you can't fry it, it's not food

          "Mind you, for the record, Google deep fried Oreos, deep fried twinkies, deep fried snickers.. The US also has a history of slapping batter on some foodstuffs not normally associated with the antient and noble art of deep frying and just going for it." -- Youtube:Fried Butter on a Stick!

        3. Henry Wertz 1 Gold badge

          Re: If you can't fry it, it's not food

          "Mind you, for the record, Google deep fried Oreos, deep fried twinkies, deep fried snickers.. The US also has a history of slapping batter on some foodstuffs not normally associated with the antient and noble art of deep frying and just going for it."

          Oh, that's not the US, that's Texas. They'll deep fry anything down there, including their prisoners.

      2. Michael Dunn
        Meh

        Re: If you can't fry it, it's not food

        I was once given a pointer by a Scotsman on the proper way to consume porridge (porage).

        Boil it up as usual, probably with a lost more salt than you would normally us, and pour it into a drawer. Then when you want to eat it, cut squares of it out of the drawer and fry them.

        Can't say it would appeal to me unless made with plenty of chillies.

  5. jai

    "Why, in my day you could buy meat anywhere. Eggs, they had. Real butter. Fresh lettuce in the..."

    Can you cook it at all? it looks like batter, so can you make pancakes out of it?

    Then you could spice the flavour up with some fried bacon, and sausages, and tomato, scrambled egg, muschrooms, beans, a couple of slices of fried bread, ketchup and HP sauce. Could be a really tasty breakfast. although might be better to leave out the weird-pancake and just have the other stuff :)

    1. Frumious Bandersnatch Silver badge

      Re: "Why, in my day you could buy meat anywhere. Eggs, they had. Real butter. Fresh lettuce in ..."

      spice the flavour up with some fried bacon, and sausages, and ...

      then hold the soylent, cos you've already got your meal right there.

  6. Locky Silver badge
    Terminator

    Cheap supermarket copies will be called

    Replent, and advertised by CGIed Rutger Hauer and Daryl Hannah

    That's my brainstorming done for the day, beer o'clock ahoy

  7. Lamont Cranston
    WTF?

    Delete the lumps?

    My kitchen doesn't have a "delete" button.

    1. Don Jefe
      Happy

      Re: Delete the lumps?

      Mine didn't either, so I upgraded it with a dog I call Delete.

  8. Bob H
    Go

    keen.

    I like eating as much as the next guy, but this really appeals to me. In true hipster fashion: I have been following this guy's exploits for a while before he went commercial and it really seems he has a point. His plan is to solve malnutrition in one product and it looks like he has it. But it doesn't replace all eating, he says he likes to have A couple of meals a week and enjoy them rather than being slaves to eating three times a day.

    Once he launches in Europe I will be going for it!

    1. Vladimir Plouzhnikov

      Re: keen.

      Quite frankly, I am amazed that there are people so lazy or lacking of taste so severely as to voluntarily forgo the joy of eating proper food in favour of drinking that baby-milk formula for adults. Maybe the next step is to skip the whole drinking inconvenience and feed it directly over an IV?

      Food is not a gas tank refill and nobody is so time-challenged that they can't spend 20-30 minutes a day to prepare proper meals for themselves.

      I can understand the utility of this as some kind of emergency rations on ships and space stations, humanitarian supplies to famine zones etc. But as a voluntary food substitute?

      Losing the taste of food is losing a part of our humanity IMHO.

      1. PerlyKing
        FAIL

        Re: keen.

        Thanks ever so much for telling the rest of us how to live our lives. Do you have any other pearls of wisdom for the rest of us?

        Food is exactly a "gas tank refill" - it is digested and provides energy to keep your body going. That some people choose to make a hobby of it is their own choice.

        I hope that you grow your own veg and hunt and kill all your meat by hand. After all, food is the most important thing in life so you'd better do a proper job of it.

        1. David Hicks
          FAIL

          Re: keen.

          >> Food is exactly a "gas tank refill"

          And sex is a mechanical function that serves only to reproduce, right?

          I pity people that think like you.

          1. This post has been deleted by its author

          2. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: keen.

            > And sex is a mechanical function that serves only to reproduce, right?

            How are we supposed to know? This is an IT site. :(

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: keen.

          'Food is exactly a "gas tank refill" - it is digested and provides energy to keep your body going.'

          Thank you, Mr.Logic.

          http://tinyurl.com/mn2p5e5

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: keen.

        @Vladimir Plouzhnikov

        "Losing the taste of food is losing a part of our humanity IMHO"

        Don't worry, we'll all be Borg drones before long, so you won't notice.

      3. Daniel B.
        Boffin

        Re: keen.

        Food is not a gas tank refill and nobody is so time-challenged that they can't spend 20-30 minutes a day to prepare proper meals for themselves.

        Food is a gas tank refill, as far as our body's concerned. Taste is all about us searching for the best energy-packed food, usually. As for the time-challenged, this is a good option for some types who have jobs where 30 minutes is all you have for eating. Technically, this might be healthier than eating at McD's. Though I'd agree that I'd use it more for emergency rations than everyday eating!

        1. Don Jefe

          Re: keen.

          Food is much more than a fuel tank refill. An easy example that shuts down the biological imperative for energy density idea is to look at a child. Even a baby dislikes certain things, regardless of nutritional content. Same with dogs, horses and cats.

          Sometimes it is best not to over think things. Life as a whole is pretty straightforward, and although scientist types hate it, not everything has a reason or underlying cause.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: keen.

          "Technically, this might be healthier than eating at McD's."

          Technically, eating the packaging from a supermarket ready meal is probably healthier (and more pleasant) than eating at McD's...

      4. Cameron Colley

        Re: keen.

        "Quite frankly, I am amazed that there are people so lazy or lacking of taste so severely as to voluntarily forgo the joy of eating proper food in favour of drinking that baby-milk formula for adults"

        It amazes me that some people assume the whole of humanity is as able as themselves in every respect. It amazes me that some people think their second-rate cooking is worth the time and effort just to get some fuel. It amazes me that some people are so rich in time and money they assume everyone can afford to taste the best food in the world without making some sacrifices.

        Not all of us are rich, successful gourmet chefs -- some of us can't eat what we love every day and, instead, choose to fuel our bodies whilst we save the time and money to enjoy things.

      5. Zack Mollusc

        Re: keen.

        I am in total agreement, Vladimir! It is almost as though different people have different views and different opinions. Crazy!

      6. Smaug

        Re: keen.

        "Quite frankly, I am amazed that there are people so lazy or lacking of taste so severely as to voluntarily forgo the joy of eating proper food in favour of drinking that baby-milk formula for adults."

        Lacking in taste, or lacking in time and/or skills? The first example to spring to mind: I don't know what proportion of people eats a ten-minute lunch at the desk, but it's probably pretty high (in certain professions, at least).

        "Maybe the next step is to skip the whole drinking inconvenience and feed it directly over an IV?"

        This is something many people would go for, I'm sure, assuming an IV can actually be made convenient rather than highly invasive.

        "Losing the taste of food is losing a part of our humanity IMHO."

        But that's not really the point of Soylent, I gather - the point is to get rid of mediocre food so that when we do eat, we eat really well. As Rob himself says, I may enjoy beer, but I don't want to drink it twenty-one times a week.

        1. Vladimir Plouzhnikov

          Re: keen.

          "This is something many people would go for, I'm sure, assuming an IV can actually be made convenient rather than highly invasive."

          That would be really depressing if it's true.

          "But that's not really the point of Soylent, I gather - the point is to get rid of mediocre food so that when we do eat, we eat really well."

          But, surely, one cannot eat well if his food is a jug of a cold flavoured glue. What can be more mediocre an experience than that? I am just puzzled why would anybody choose a solution which is worse than the original problem.

      7. Alan Brown Silver badge

        Re: keen.

        I really hate to think of the long term damage that would do to the gut unless there are significant amounts of soft fibre in it.

      8. hplasm Silver badge
        Happy

        Re: keen.

        Non-nomnomnom.

        Will your teeth fall out in protest if you eat just this?

      9. Horridbloke
        Unhappy

        @ " I am amazed that there are people so lazy..."

        I know someone who is in his fifties and runs his own business successfully (and therefore presumably isn't a total fool). He exists almost exclusively on low-preparation processed crud: crisps, value brand pasties and nasty microwave meals. He is hugely averse to cooking. I was present the first time he chopped up an onion a couple of years ago and last week he successfully cooked some rice under my instruction, but it's unlikely he'll ever get into the cooking habit and I could see him downing gloop instead and paying handsomely for the "convenience".

        Yes, it's pathetic, hence the icon.

      10. Intractable Potsherd Silver badge

        Re: keen.

        IMHO, food should be merely fuel, sex should be merely mechanical procreation. I hope for a future in which we don't *need* to eat, drink, breathe, have sex. I really resent being at the mercy of my biological body, and like like to believe that humanity will be free of it eventually, turning all these things into pass-times, not requirements.

        1. David Hicks
          FAIL

          Re: keen.

          "IMHO, food should be merely fuel, sex should be merely mechanical procreation. I hope for a future in which we don't *need* to eat, drink, breathe, have sex. I really resent being at the mercy of my biological body, and like like to believe that humanity will be free of it eventually, turning all these things into pass-times, not requirements."

          You have lost touch with your humanity. I recommend some councilling. You are not a robot and should not aspire to be one.

        2. Michael Dunn
          Joke

          Re: keen. @Intractable Potsherd

          Hoping to reach your 80's then?

    2. David Hicks
      WTF?

      Slaves to eating?

      Eating is a pleasure. If you're a slave to it then you're doing it wrong.

      And yes, even when it's salad it can be delicious.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Pint

      Re: keen.

      I like eating as much as the next guy, but this really appeals to me. In true hipster fashion: I have been following this guy's exploits for a while before he went commercial and it really seems he has a point.

      If you're a true hipster you won't want anything to do with it now he's went 'commercial'

      1. Don Jefe

        Re: keen.

        With the caveat that PBR is a perfectly acceptable commercial product for them.

        1. paulll Bronze badge
          Happy

          Re: keen.

          Professional Bull Riders ... Na

          Petroleo Brasileiro ... Maybe?

          Pabst Blue Ribbon ... Ah, the must be the one.

      2. Rukario
        Trollface

        Re: keen.

        > If you're a true hipster you won't want anything to do with it now he's went 'commercial'

        If you're a true hipster you won't want anything to do with it unless it has a picture of a half-eaten fruit on the packaging.

    4. Colin Brett
      WTF?

      Re: keen.

      "His plan is to solve malnutrition in one product and it looks like he has it. "

      How can this solve malnutrition in famine-struck tracts of the Third World? It seems to need clean water and a means to refrigerate the final mixture to make it drinkable.

      Will the maker be funding such developments with the profits from this gloop?

      Inquiring minds want to know.

      Colin

      1. Spleen

        Re: keen.

        You always chuck something in about the Third World when you're doing some sort of food science and looking for publicity / cash.

        He's actually a bit out of date, he should have said something about how the more efficient use of agricultural land will prevent global warming.

      2. Bob H
        Boffin

        Re: keen.

        Malnutrition isn't always about the third world, to quote the Time article:

        "On a trip home to Atlanta, Rhinehart says he came across an elderly neighbor, who had become gaunt with age as he grew too old to continue properly cooking. He realized Soylent might have benefits for other people too."

        "“It seemed ridiculous that things have gotten so efficient and streamlined and we have come so far, but we haven’t figure out how to get healthy food to everyone,” says Rhinehart. “In San Francisco, the food and health differences between the poorer and more affluent areas are so clear. It’s not that people don’t know what things are healthy and unhealthy. They don’t have the means.”"

        Read more: http://healthland.time.com/2013/06/10/soylent-is-the-food-of-the-future-really-a-nutrition-solution/#ixzz2WCdThNUM

        1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge

          Re: keen.

          It’s not that people don’t know what things are healthy and unhealthy. They don’t have the means.

          It's exactly the opposite. Poor people do have the means to eat healthily, they either choose not to, or more likely, don't know how to cook.

          £15 - £20 a week ought to be able to feed you quite nicely. Particularly if you've got time to shop around for bargains and make stuff. You won't be eating meat every meal of course, but you should be able to get a balanced diet and have some nice stuff too. That wouldn't get you far in ready meals, or turkey twizzlers - but real food goes a long way. Most of my evening meals come in well under £2 a portion. And if time's tight, it takes the same 20 minutes to make a casserole for 6, as it does to make it for 1, and then you've got 5 frozen ready-meals that are quite healthy.

  9. LinkOfHyrule
    Happy

    Pink wafer biscuits = Soylent Pink

    Sometimes life doesn’t afford proper forum posts.

    1. Lamont Cranston
      Go

      Re: Pink wafer biscuits = Soylent Pink

      Unlike this beige goo, I would happily live on Pink Wafer biscuits. At least until the malnutrition set in.

      1. LinkOfHyrule
        Thumb Up

        Re: Pink wafer biscuits = Soylent Pink

        They are blooming addictive - I've got a pack on my desk right now - they wont last long come tea break!

        1. Kubla Cant Silver badge

          Re: Pink wafer biscuits = Soylent Pink

          @LinkOfHyrule

          "tea break"? Are you working in the 1950s?

          1. LinkOfHyrule
            Happy

            Re: 1950s

            Yes indeed old chap! My internet connection is a bit slow back here though but I keep hearing about a new invention called a "tranny" that will speed things up for me!*

            *Transistor for those of you born after 1960 like myself who was born in the 80s despite working in the 1950s

    2. fourThirty
      Unhappy

      Re: Pink wafer biscuits = Soylent Pink

      I ate a whole 200g packet in 20 mins as a lunchtime challenge a few years ago, once I reached the end they had a distinctly metallic taste and I spent the afternoon clutching my innards....

      An highly unpleasant experience!

      1. LinkOfHyrule
        Happy

        Re: I ate a whole 200g packet in 20 mins

        Blimey! I have never done that many myself, sounds like you might have ODed! I think you should have phoned 999 and taken the packaging to A+E with you!

        I wonder what the antidote to pink wafers is? Fruit and vegetables probably!

      2. drunk.smile
        Mushroom

        Re: Pink wafer biscuits = Soylent Pink

        I also did similar eating a whole 200g pack of custard creams in 20minutes as I figured it to be an efficient way to both carb & sugar up before going on a run.

        20km later and no toilet within traveling distance... I realised how wrong I was.

        1. LinkOfHyrule

          Re: Pink wafer biscuits = Soylent Pink

          I think the El reg Special Projects research thingy needs to do a full scale investigation into the effects of eating 200g of each type of biscuit in twenty minuets. Everything from Hobnobs to Jammy Dodgers including dead fly biscuits, Bourbons, Nice and even Fig Rolls!

          Maybe get that turd examiner woman from Channel Four involved too if drunk.smile's experiences with custard creams are anything to go by.

          1. Thecowking
            Thumb Up

            Re: Pink wafer biscuits = Soylent Pink

            Dead fly biscuits count as one of your five a day.

            Jaffa cakes are 2 because they contain both orangy bits AND chocolate, which is made from a bean.

          2. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Add flavouring

            Jammy Dodgers are best taken with a dip of satay sauce. (Seriously.)

            1. Michael Dunn
              Flame

              Re: Add flavouring @ AC16:51

              It must be the Thai recipe, and not the Indonesian one!

              (Icon obvious!)

          3. Michael Dunn
            Alert

            Re: Pink wafer biscuits = Soylent Pink @LinkofHyrule

            I imagine the Fig Rolls will definitely ease the passge!

      3. fritsd
        Pint

        Re: Pink wafer biscuits = Soylent Pink

        Soylent Pink is krupuk (obviously). Maybe you had the kemiri nut variant, which is quite bitter if you eat a lot of it.

  10. LinkOfHyrule
    Paris Hilton

    Actually, I have now thought of a proper forum post

    ...This has not only been done before but has been done better. You should look into Fortisip, PEG tubes and feed pumps.

    If you are going to eat gloop - what better way than having it pumped directly into your stomach by a machine via a plastic tube sticking out your belly button?

    1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge
      Pint

      Re: Actually, I have now thought of a proper forum post

      All very well until the belly-button port gets infected. Icky. Although still less annoying than nasal-gastric tubes (backpacks and litmus paper at the ready).

      Much better to have it teleported directly into the stomach. I'm currently working on a device to do this, as architects keep forgetting to make space in their building plans for the water services plant - and the only solution that ever seems acceptable is teleportation. Hmmmm, perhaps I ought to launch my own kickstarter program...

      Beer for the inspiration that I expect it to provide me for the rest of the evening.

      1. LinkOfHyrule
        Pint

        Re: Actually, I have now thought of a proper forum post

        If your plan comes to fruition, we'll all be teleporting kebabs directly to our stomachs using phone apps while still in the pub - and no doubt some of us will be directly teleporting said kebabs on to the pavement come closing time too!

  11. Faye B

    A new whey to eat

    Well that Soylent certainly made me green.

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Mushroom

    Speaking as a vegan...

    ...I want to know how much they'd pay me to eat this.

    1. FrankAlphaXII

      Re: Speaking as a vegan...

      Speaking as someone that doesn't eat conventional foods except at Annual Training and Battle Assembly weekends, I'd like to know the exact same thing.

    2. Tom Wood

      Re: Speaking as a vegan...

      It's not vegan though... the protein is whey (from milk... a byproduct of cheesemaking).

  13. Sebastian Brosig
    Boffin

    Thanks to the intrepid Reg reporter..

    .. for conducting this brave experiment.

    Does this stuff have enough fibre to not mess up your digestive system entirely?

    Please give detailed reports from the other end.

    1. BoldMan

      Re: Thanks to the intrepid Reg reporter..

      But not TOO detailed please...

    2. TeeCee Gold badge
      Coat

      Re: Thanks to the intrepid Reg reporter..

      If the ingredients are as speculated above, I'm sure that there will be plenty of reports from the other end.....

      1. David Hicks
        Mushroom

        Re: Thanks to the intrepid Reg reporter..

        >> I'm sure that there will be plenty of reports from the other end ...

        Boom boom!

        (Actually literally.....)

    3. AndrueC Silver badge
      Joke

      Re: Thanks to the intrepid Reg reporter..

      Please give detailed reports from the other end.

      That sounds like a crap idea :)

  14. nick bunyan

    Technical problem...

    If this 'so-called' substitute comes in liquid form, How on earth do you fry it?

    1. Mike 122

      Re: Technical problem...

      Freeze, batter, deep fry. Same way as you prepare Mars bars or icecream.

    2. Michael Dunn

      Re: Technical problem...

      Come on, Nick, use your imagination!

      (Actually it _does_ look a bit like pancake batter.)

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Boffin

    Add Tabasco.

    Seriously. Maybe a little Worcester aswell/or.

  16. David Lawrence
    Happy

    Has anyone thought about roughage?

    ....err won't this make one rather constipated? I'm no expert on the human digestive system but I thought we needed plenty of roughage to 'help things through'. That looks like a gloopy milkshake to me. Has this been thought through? Will one need extra assistance or will it be quite the opposite? No doubt our intrepid reporter will keep us informed about his movements.......!

    1. Kubla Cant Silver badge

      Re: Has anyone thought about roughage?

      I think the term "roughage" and the more recent "dietary fibre" sound more, er, rough and fibrous than they actually are. Soya beans and lentils are good sources of dietary fibre, assuming it hasn't been processed away in the manufacture of this stuff.

    2. Grikath Silver badge
      Boffin

      Re: Has anyone thought about roughage?

      Given the attitude of the manufacturer towards "wasting time", I suspect that his attitude will extend to proper bowel movements, and that to reduce that the amount of dietary fibre will be minimal.

      So I expect this stuff to give you serious constipation if used for extended periods, and a major bollocking of your intestinal flora, with all unpleasantness (short and long term) attached to that. Unless the manufacturer has miraculously evaded all the associated complications that come with medically indicated and applied liquid nutrition, you can expect *at least* the same long and intermediate term problems.

    3. Michael Dunn
      Joke

      Re: Has anyone thought about roughage?

      " I'm no expert on the human digestive system " Well, I've been carrying on around for 80 years, now and it still gives me surprises!

      1. Michael Dunn
        Headmaster

        Re: Has anyone thought about roughage?

        That should have been "carrying ONE" I've found I don't carry ON quite as much now.

  17. Don Jefe
    Happy

    Wine Pairing

    Should I go with a Boone's Farm June/2013 or just go full in with a 40oz of Steel Reserve malt liquor?

    Also, I think the author has chosen the wrong career and should be writing restaurant and wine reviews.

    1. FrankAlphaXII
      Joke

      Re: Wine Pairing

      >>Boone's Farm June/2013

      Last week was a lovely year, wasn't it?

  18. myxiplx2
    WTF?

    Isn't this just babyfood?

    Would be interesting for a taste comparison to some of the more popular babymilk brands out there.

    ... or for the yet more cynical, buy some wholesale farming milk substitute that they feed to cattle, and see how similar this stuff is.

    I doubt this guy has put huge amounts of work into testing and verifying the contents. It seems more likely he's just found a cunning way to make a quick buck selling milk substitutes to the gullible.

    1. Tom Wood

      Re: Isn't this just babyfood?

      It's basically maltodextrin (a carbohydrate, similar to glucose, but less sweet) and whey (protein powder, a byproduct of cheesemaking) and olive oil and various vitamins and minerals.

      Whey is commonly used as a supplement protein source by bodybuilders and other sportspeople (in addition to real foods) and maltodextrin is commonly used in sports energy drinks.

      They are OK in addition to a balanced diet of real food, but I wouldn't like to survive solely off them.

  19. Joe 48

    Sodka Sounds Ace.

    Certainly better than the last concoction I made aptly named Vgine, consisting of, Vodka, Gin and Wine. You won't need food after a few glasses although an ambulance might be required.

  20. Phil Atkin

    It's missing all the 5 major food groups

    As far as I can tell, it has

    No pizza

    No beer

    No bacon cheeseburger

    No fruit'n'veg

    No ice cream

    although it sort of looks like ice cream after a night in the sun.

    So zero out of 5 and one bad impersonation. I'll give it a miss.

  21. andy k O'Croydon
    Unhappy

    "...a Vodka-Soylent cocktail that we have tentatively named "Sodka""

    Why tentatively?

    1. Lamont Cranston

      Post testing, it can be renamed to

      HolycrapwhydidIjustdrinkthatblaaaaaargh.

  22. HedKrash
    Pirate

    Vert

    Do they have a euthanasia centre anywhere conveniently close?

  23. HedKrash

    New cocktail?

    Perhaps you should call your mix Voylent.

    1. VinceH Silver badge
      Thumb Up

      Re: New cocktail?

      That might depend on his condition the following morning.

  24. Big_Boomer
    Mushroom

    Make it with Gin.....

    and call it "Sin". Looks and sounds bloody awful but for those who find eating a chore I'm sure it will be ideal. In fact it looks exactly like those diet shakes that various companies were flogging a few years back. If it tastes anything like them then eating your own sick is preferable,... and the after effects will turn you into a human hovercraft called Mr RumptyPumpty Bottyburp Fartypants. The icon is what happens when you walk past a naked flame.

  25. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    As somehow who spent 5 months on a VLCD (Very Low Calorie Diet) drinking nothing but water and eating nothing but meal replacement shakes and soups, which are pretty similar to this stuff, I can assure you it's perfectly possible to live without real food for extended periods. Not much fun, but doable.

    My advice would be get yourself a really, really good food mixer, I went through a fair few before I found one that mixed the powder in a sensible amount of time and was rugged enough to survive so much use.

  26. ACx

    Soylent: Soon to be seen handed out job centers UK wide.

  27. Uncle Slacky Silver badge
    Stop

    Potatoes & milk?

    ISTR that it's possible to live indefinitely off potatoes and the occasional bit of milk - presumably that would be easier and cheaper to manage than this concoction?

    1. Irony Deficient

      Live? Exist.

      Uncle Slacky, that can only be done with certain varieties of potatoes. Perhaps the most (in)famous of those is the Lumper, which for that very reason was widely grown for domestic consumption in Ireland in past centuries, and which was nearly wiped out by Phytophthora infestans in the 1840s. I think that a descendant of the Lumper is now being sold again in Northern Ireland.

  28. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Try mixing it with Eat Water Slim Rice - 7.7Kcal per 100g - to make 'rice pudding'.

    1. David Hicks

      Wow, that seems like the holy grail of non-food. A thing you can eat that has bulk and fills you up but almost zero calories.

      Though on further reading it's chewy and it smells bad...

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        One amazon reviewer compared the texture to tape-worm segments.

        Yummy.

  29. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Are the photos in the article before or after pictures?

  30. Bob H
    Boffin

    Nutritional Vodka?

    Didn't I once hear that the alcohol in vodka prevents the absorption of the nutrients in any accompanying liquid? I thought I was getting a decent dose of Vit-C until I heard that 12 years ago.

    1. Yet Another Commentard

      Re: Nutritional Vodka?

      The alcohol in vodka is, well, alcohol (ethanol, ethyl hydroxide, call it what you will). It has quite an effect on various efficacies of food ingestion, usually negative. There's a lot of research about it.

      The main problem is that alcoholics tend to neglect their actual food intake in favour of alcohol.

      Making some bizarre alcoholic cocktail with this goop will reduce, but not remove, the amount of available useful nutrition.

      Many alcoholic drinks are a little nutritious (beer, for example is, and has been called, liquid bread). Vodka, being distilled loses much of the other stuff that pops along in beer.

      1. Alan Brown Silver badge

        Re: Nutritional Vodka?

        Beer as "liquid bread" was significantly lower in alcohol content than the stuff you buy in pubs - and a hell of a lot yeastier. I've drunk middle-ages recipe brews. Some could be regarded as "chewy"

        The main reason for drinking beer was that it was safer than drinking water - people hadn't cottoned on to the fact that it was boiling the water which made beer safe.

      2. Michael Dunn
        Happy

        Re: Nutritional Vodka? @YAC 12:15

        "The main problem is that alcoholics tend to neglect their actual food intake in favour of alcohol."

        Mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm!

        "Many alcoholic drinks are a little nutritious" And don't forget the resveratrol in red wine. I'm sure that red wine should count as one of your five a day!

  31. Tom 7 Silver badge

    I've heard you can get your complete nutritional requirements

    from 20 pints of Guinness and a glass of orange juice a day.

    I think I'd prefer to try that and become a novelist and not a hack for the reg!

  32. Herby Silver badge

    If it were green...

    It woudl remind me of the scene in the Thomas Crowne Affair where Rene Russo pours a class of glop and drinks it after a trip across the pond.

    Maybe it was the stuff, who knows.

    As for "cooking" it, the stuff looks like pancake batter, so maybe it is salvageable after all. It probably does contain ingredients from my two favorite food groups: Sugar and Preservatives.

    I hope that someone records the before and after weight to see if one can lose a few pounds.

  33. Kevin McMurtrie Silver badge

    Pancake?

    What if you cut back the water, blend it until the proteins get sticky, mix in a bit of baking powder, and cook it in a skillet?

  34. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "It leaves behind a thin, greasy residue that is cloying and caused us to swallow repeatedly."

    A bit like the Obama administration's response to the NSA scandal, then.

  35. Marketing Hack Silver badge
    Devil

    That bag of Soylent makes me want to say.....

    Edward G. Robinson, is that you?

  36. Mycho Silver badge

    It interests me a bit

    Not to replace food, but to keep a few packs in the back of the cupboard for those days when I really just cannot be bothered.

    But I'm not convinced my stomach can take it. But I'd give it a try.

  37. BiffaBacon

    Defication

    The only thing that I am interested in about this product is what your stools look like after eating nothing but this stuff for say, a month.

    If this product could assure me a perfectly double-tapered, golden brown shit every time on a clockwork schedule, then I would heartily partake. Otherwise, I just don't see the benefit.

    1. hplasm Silver badge
      Happy

      Re: Defication

      I imagine they would more likely resemble breezeblocks, and be more worthy of the name 'bench' than

      'stool'

  38. Dave 62

    I can't see how this is any different from Nurishment or any other fortified protein shake type thingie. I've lived off nothing but Nurishment and redbull for a couple of days.

    But 3L of that gloop? Noo thankyou. If they can get the volume down to 1L a day or even into pill form then it's worth considering, but as it is, you may as well have normal meals.

  39. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Lol

    On the flip side, apart from the smell it looks EXACTLY the same on the way out as when it went in.

    I did read somewhere that the great apes eat their waste, in order to extract the maximum useful energy from the undigested plant matter.

    Also if a way could be found to generate the protein, carbohydrates etc directly from available plant matter (cough hemp /cough) then it could go a long way towards one day colonising Mars etc.

    Red Bull SO need to look into this, imagine that. "New, Soylent Bull. Now with 400% more roughage."

    AC-DC x520

  40. Cliff

    You have to mix it with clean water, you have to chill it

    Sounds a lot like cooking to me. Well, food preparation at least. Would rather invest that time and effort into (beans/cheese/marmite) on toast, nature's true super foods.

  41. Adam JC

    As a sufferer of Crohns disease for the past 7 years..

    I can quite honestly see this being useful for me - I quite often have periods where I am not quite having a flare-up, but could really do with 'resting' my digestive system - but those horrible complan / fortisip things are quite revolting after a few days. This would suit me perfectly as an alternative, being able to add my own flavouring to it.

    Not sure I could live off the stuff permanently though....

    1. TechnicalBen Silver badge
      Facepalm

      Re: As a sufferer of Crohns disease for the past 7 years..

      Yes. People who consider this a replacement to all food, all the time miss out on the true strength of it. Helping those that need it, and not those who think they do because it's a fad/cool. I still baulk at the internet a no matter how impossible/obscure/bizarre the idea, you'll get 100 people on Kick starter funding it as the "greatest most useful think ever". If someone posted a chocolate Kettle, the replies would be "it will solve world hunger" and "obviously it's to help global temperature trends". I don't know if I should laugh of cry...

  42. xeroks

    " As Rob himself says, I may enjoy beer, but I don't want to drink it twenty-one times a week"

    between this and the untested frying status of this gloop, it's clear their research team need to come to Scotland for a couple of months.

  43. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Research?

    Dear god, has anyone commenting (seriously) actually read into this at all?

    It's not so much a food substitute as a diet free from the crap that our standard processed food contains.

    I'm trying it because I'd like to see if it does anything about my lethargy and lack of brain power.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Research?

      What? Wait? Huh? Did you just?

      "a diet free from the crap that our standard processed food contains."

      I have a one word reply to that, but I'll give 4 and take your pick:

      Veg

      Fruit

      Staples

      Meat

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Research?

        None of those 4 are processed food.

    2. Michael Dunn

      Re: Research? @AC 17:42

      There's a depth of meaning in that last line!

  44. Dana W
    Unhappy

    bad eating. Its simple.

    A Cheeseburger is 99¢ and a salad is $6.99 to $10 and they wonder why we are all fat.

    1. TechnicalBen Silver badge
      Headmaster

      Re: bad eating. Its simple.

      A cheeseburger is addictive and a salad is not (one triggers our "I'm full" response in our biology, the other does not). They KNOW what they are doing.

  45. ZanzibarRastapopulous

    Student food.

    Looks like a chewed pot noodle.

    If you chew a PN before it's "cooked" it'd be a powder...

    I guess this is what you get when beer meets funds.

  46. Dick Pountain
    WTF?

    Mind Mash

    Over 50 years ago our English teacher told us that reading science fiction would rot our minds. He was SO right. Whatever is in this crap can't be any cheaper or more healthy than, for example, rice and dhal, let alone egg and chips.

  47. bag o' spanners
    Devil

    Get Sharty

    I'd like to know the gauge of straw that it can exit through. (Purely for educational purposes)

  48. Boris the Cockroach Silver badge
    IT Angle

    I'm buying

    1000 crates of this stuff, not to eat, but to sell to the survivors of the coming zombie apocalypse.

    1. Mike Richards Silver badge

      Re: I'm buying

      To eat or throw at the hordes of the undead?

  49. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Blatent Futurama reference

    Bachelor Chow - now with added flavour!

  50. Jim in Phoenix

    Send a sample to the sheriff

    I can see one potential group of large customers - Law enforcement. This can be used as another way to make life behind bars unpleasant so people don't want to go back. It has its advantages. It comes in powder form so you can store a lot of it in a small space. Also it won't quickly go off if you don't put it in the freezer. The people who mix it with water don't need to know how to cook anything. The cost of cooking (gas, maintaining the stove) can be avoided. Also there's no need for eating utensils that inmates can use to make weaons. Also there's a huge savings on dishwashing - fewer things to wash. I say the soylent people should send a sample to Maricopa County sheriff Joe Arpio with the reminder he can safely add green food dye to it.

  51. Zot
    Happy

    Well I eat to live.

    So I would resort to spooning the powder in my mouth, then drinking some water to swill it down - maybe jump up and down to mix it all up a bit! ; )

    That way I can carry on with what I'm doing instead of wasting my life boiling things until they're soft or fry things until they're brown. Not to mention the bother of actually spending time eating something and then washing up those centuries old cutlery devices and plates.

    Get with the times guys, beige goo is the way to goo!

    1. Michael Dunn
      Pint

      Re: Well I eat to live.

      Not to mention the utter time-wasting process of removing caps from beer bottles?

      I'd prfer to waste the time.

  52. ShadowDragon8685
    WTF?

    This stuff looks frightening.

    The first thing that occurs to me is to try freezing the stuff into popsicles and having it as a frozen treat.

    -Or freeze it into ice-cubes and use the ice-cubes to cool down other glasses of the stuff.

    I guess a brave/foolhardy chef could also try baking it into a cake or bread or something.

    Perhaps blending it with some actual fruit and/or milk as well.

    -Just don't try to blend it with beef, bovril, tabasco and a brick. I don't foresee that ending well.

    --Hilariously, but not well.

    Perhaps boiling ramen noodles in the stuff.

    -I don't imagine that would be very good, but as long as you're already engaging in ill-advised culinary and gastrointestional experimentation.

    See if it can make imbibing Alka-Seltzer any less godawful.

    Mix it with apple cider, if any can be located.

    -Alternatively, forget this nonsense and just drink the apple cider, because apple cider is the stuff.

    Chill it down thoroughly, mix it with Jello-O powder, custard and/or pudding, serve as a desert treat.

    -Possibly with fish sticks, if you're feeling rather peculiar and/or Gallifreyan.

    --Or chill it down that thoroughly, mixed with your choice of other powdered cooking ingredients and use it as dip for cookies.

  53. Martin Ryan

    Meal replacement

    In what sense is this a "meal replacement"? Surely it is just a meal.

  54. JustNiz

    Costs too much

    I wouldnt mind giving it a try but $65 for a weeks worth is Waaay too much.

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