ForeSights: Virtual Reality Dining, Applying virtual reality technology to the culinary world

ForeSights: Virtual Reality Dining, Applying virtual reality technology to the culinary world

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Executive Summary


Restaurant dining is about more than just the food-the experience of dining out is more than half of the fun. That is one reason why food sales in restaurants (in the US, at least) actually surpassed those in grocery stores for the first time ever in January of 2015, according to the American Enterprise Institute. As robust as the market is, however, competition is keen and consumers tend to be variety-seeking. Virtual reality has the potential to add a brand new experience to dining, one that could eventually rearrange the competitive landscape within the restaurant industry.

Key Findings

Popularized in the gaming community, virtual reality can now shape and alter all of the major elements of the dining experience.

Virtual reality has the potential to allow the consumer to experience the pleasure of food consumption without any of the pain by manipulating the sight, taste, smell, touch, and even the sound of the eating experience.

Project Nourished-a collaboration of more than two dozen food scientists, engineers, chefs, and designers-demonstrates how one may design a "gastronomic virtual reality experience."

Virtual reality dining offers myriad potential future applications including remote dining, alternative reality dining, eating therapy, and even help losing weight by changing the psychology of food consumption.


"ForeSights: Virtual Reality Dining" demonstrates how virtual reality technology can be applied to the culinary world. Virtual reality dining uses three dimensional imagery to make the consumer feel like they are someplace else, also altering the taste, smell, touch, and audio elements of the dining experience.

This report was compiled using Canadean's ForeSights methodology, which aims to identify new concepts that could influence the market in fast-moving consumer goods.

Your key questions answered:

How can virtual reality be used to trick the brain into thinking a gourmet meal is being consumed when the reality may be different?

Virtual reality can allow food allergy sufferers to enjoy forbidden foods. How can virtual reality dining be used to improve weight-loss outcomes?

There is often a stigma associated with eating alone in a restaurant. How can virtual reality provide a high-tech solution to this issue?

Restaurant chains like McDonald's and TGI Fridays are experimenting with virtual reality. What type of consumer are both innovating for?

How is research on the difference in satisfaction from the purchase of experiences versus things bullish for virtual reality dining?

Reasons To Buy

Consider emerging opportunities and threats in the fast-moving consumer goods market and gain insight into potential future consumer behavior.

Identify interesting new and emerging concepts, products, and ideas on offer in retail, foodservice, online spaces, and beyond.

Understand how new concepts and ideas fit into-or challenge-current consumer trends.

Gain insight and inspiration for innovation programs and new product development.

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Ken Research
Ankur Gupta, Head Marketing & Communications


Virtual reality dining

Project Nourished shows what may be possible

What is Project Nourished trying to accomplish?

Project Nourished sketches the future of VR innovation

Restaurants begin to experiment with virtual reality

McDonald's "Happy Goggles" also tests virtual reality

Samsung thinks virtual reality can go beyond games

Virtual reality taps into "experiences versus things"

How could virtual reality dining change the future?


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Kokiri Lab, TGI Fridays UK, McDonald's Sweden, Samsung, Qantas, Stamford University

Virtual reality dining, Project Nourished, wearable technology, molecular gastronomy, sensory, food allergies, food sensitivities, wearables, eating therapy, remote dining, alternative reality dining, weight loss, solo dining, TGI Fridays, McDonald's Happy Goggles, Samsung Gear VR, experiences, things, bone conduction transducer, 3D printed food

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