Mathilde Redshaw
Jul 26 · 3 min read

It’s a Thursday night in the year 2050. While the drinks industry had tried to tackle the growing interest in tee-totalism, their attempts at premiumisation and introduction of low-alcohol and low-calorie had ultimately proved speculators right, and by 2035, alcohol was phased out of the social scene.

You’ve filed that report on how Black Mirror was right. You remembered to program your fridge to re-stock itself this morning. Even the fact the AI intern’s machine learning found a way to streamline the supply chain by lunchtime, effectively making your role redundant, can’t get you down. It’s a Thursday night in the year 2050, and you deserve after-work drinks.

Your company are celebrating 30 years paper-free, so they’ve really pulled out all the stops in the VR company bar this evening. There used to be a saying back in the day — ‘pick your poison’ — but it couldn’t be further removed from the various health benefits each drink boasts of now. Of course, we’ve got the old favourite, kombucha. A vintage classic, the notorious cancer reducing properties make it a stable at corporate events. There’s also a few glasses of Kava, which is great if you want that mellow pseudo-drunk feeling without the hangover, but they’ve still not managed to make it taste any better than Thames water and hemp milk, which is still the least popular of the milks still around after dairy milk was banned. There’s also the whole CBD range, of course. It overtook alcohol back in the 2040s, and it overtook marijuana in the 2020s. You can go for a soft-drink style, like Sprig, or a bitter version, like OTO. And you can always spike your own cocktails with CBD. Or should I say mock-tails. There are a whole range of mock-tails on offer; most liquors have been subtly swapped with an alcohol-free alternative, and with synthetic alcohol like Alcarelle, even people who can still remember old-school alcohol can hardly tell the different. Only the espresso part of the martini has been replaced by mushroom coffee, after coffee became extinct, but we got over that years ago. Maybe something tropical, like Caleño? Or something with herbal notes, like Nona June? Or maybe some Borrago…

But hey, things aren’t all bad. Work functions like this are a great way to catch up with co-workers from all over the world; some of the guys from the Japanese office have turned up virtually. It’s also fun to see some of the people from your own office; after all, with skyscrapers over 50km high, there are always lots of fresh faces. Some of your coworkers propose a juice bar crawl; although you’re tempted, you know they’ll end up at Sober, one of the hottest no-alcohol nightclubs right now, and you can’t be bothered to spend precious Bitcoin for a caffeine IV drip in the morning.
But hey, at least there’s no hangovers.

This is part of our ‘Food in The Year 2050’ series, where we envisage the future of food. Read the other parts in our series here.

Articles used to envisage the future of food:

Forward Fooding

The world's first collaborative platform for the food and beverage industry

Mathilde Redshaw

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Chatting to the biggest and baddest FoodTech start-ups in the game…what’s not to love?

Forward Fooding

The world's first collaborative platform for the food and beverage industry

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