It's been a year of recalls and "uncontrollable diarrhoea" for Soylent and its fans. While such a big upset could theoretically inspire a startup to reevaluate and refine its existing products, Soylent continues to march forward — a recent listing on Amazon reveals two new flavours of the futuristic food just in time for the new year. Happy 2017!
As you may recall, Soylent ended up recalling its Food Bar a month after releasing it when Gizmodo reported that it was causing customers to have "uncontrollable diarrhoea" and vomiting, sending some to the emergency room. Soon after, Soylent halted sales of the 1.6 version of its powdered formula after people reported similar symptoms. The company eventually concluded it was the high-tech algal flour in the bars and powder that caused the illness, and vowed to remove it from future products.
In the new year, Soylent will release two new flavours of its pre-bottled 2.0 formula, in Cacao and Nectar — a signal to the world that the company is not giving up.
Soylent 2.0 and its coffee-flavoured version are the company's only products that have yet to be recalled, though a number of people have reported getting ill off the prebottled drink. r/Soylent is full of tales of 2.0-induced "constant watery diarrhoea", "crazy body aches" and "the worst stomach pain, vomiting, and diarrhoea" of a poor Redditor's "entire life" — and let's not even get started on the mould problem.
While the new products are already listed on Amazon, Soylent has yet to put out a press release or much information about its newest flavours. We reached out to the company with some questions about the new flavours, but had not heard back at time of writing. What we do know is that the Cacao flavour is "made with real Chocolate" and the Nectar flavour is "made for those with a sweet tooth", whatever that means.
Both formulas are made from "plant-based, with carbohydrates from beets, protein from soy, healthy fats from renewable algae sources". The company vowed to stop using algal flour in its product, so you could surmise the algae-based ingredients in the new drinks will be made from algal oil, currently in the 2.0 and Coffiest drinks.
Will these new flavours terrorise Soylent stans with more vomiting and diarrhoea? Or perhaps it will usher Silicon Valley's "solution" to food into an era of redemption? The new flavours start shipping in the new year, so we'll have to wait and see.