Space food: From Gagarin's tube of borsch to the hi-tech technology

RIR visited the Research Institute for Special Food Technologies in Moscow.

Mealtime is one of the most pleasant moments for astronauts, as they happily confess they look forward to relaxing around the table after a long and exhausting day on board the ISS . 

On the eve of Cosmonautics Day (International Day of Human Space Flight) on April 12, RIR visited the Research Institute for Special Food Technologies in Moscow.

For many people space food is associated with food tubes, but the space food industry has come a long way since the first space flight.  “Since Yuri Gagarin’s first ever space flight, we have designed more the 300 products. It’s all started with the tubes. [But] . in the mid-80s we started designing vacuum-dried products. Nowadays, in addition to these products, we deliver fresh fruit and vegetables to the space station”, says Dr. Viktor Dobrovolsky, Chief Space Food Developer and Head of the Research Institute for the Food Concentrate Industry and Special Food Technologies.

Each country supplies its astronauts with its own food rations, but astronauts can choose and order products from the menus of their foreign colleagues.

Americans love our soups: borsch, rassolnik, kharcho... They order our vacuum-dried cottage cheese, caviar”, explains Dr. Dobrovolsky.

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