Healthiness and cost of synthesized food
From the two realistic methods for food synthesis (also introduced on the food synthesis main page) one seems quite more critical in regards to the healthiness of its products than the other.
Producing healthy food by micro-managing cell growth seems not to be a too big issue. It's just a matter of cultivating the right cells that we always ingested.
Whether food out of artificially mechanosynthesized of food-grade molecules will be healthy might depend on the path technological development takes:
Scenario 1: gem-gum Technology will be reached more disruptively by a path more akin to the direct path than the incremental path. In that case the range of floppy digestible molecules that can be synthesized may be rather restricted in the beginning. And new molecule classes may be milked as proprietary cash cow and thereby delaying a bit the worldwide indiscriminate supply.
Scenario 2: gem-gum Technology will be reached more softly by a path more akin to the incremental path rather than the direct path. Some molecule synthesis mechanisms from earlier generation nanosystems (although not fully diamondoid themselves**) might get integrated in specialized diamondoid food synthesizers. Making the situation less severe than in scenario 1. Migration to mechanosynthesis by fully diamondoid systems will raise efficiency. ...
Making something acceptably tasty seems much easier than to make something acceptably healthy. In the early pases of synthesized food and especially in scenario 1 we may have the problem of Very tasty food that does not contain stuff of which we don't yet know that we need it. On the short term there will be no consequences but on the long therm there might be deficiency symptoms.
Consider the following purely hypothetical situation:
- food from early freely available methods for molecular synthesis -- | very cheap | very tasty | not very healthy (in the deficiency sense)
- micromanaged cell growth food -- | below medium price | normal tasty | very healthy
- conventional grown food -- above medium price | normal tasty | normal healthy
- food from early proprietary methods for molecular synthesis -- | very expensive | very tasty | supposedly very very healthy
Preventing degradation of quality of food supply worldwide should have a high priority. But on the short term bad food is often better than no food at all. Dealing with these topics will not be easy.
Reducing radioactivity in food
In the case of food which's molecules are mechanosynthesized atom by atom there comes up the opportunity to check each and every every single atom on nuclear stability. (see: isotope sorting) Normally this should not be necessary but it might prove useful in the vicinity of horrific nuclear accidents.
When radioisotopes (like e.g. potassium) are filtered out on a large scale one ends up with concentrated radioactive material. This material could be delivered to facilities appropriate for dealing with those isotopes via tube mail/capsule transport in a form controlledly checkerboard diluted, covalently, gemstone sealed and lead shielded.