5150: New Beginnings opens with the citizen Bailey stating “Pastrami on rye, nothing better.” He then wonders for a moment if it is real pastrami. He decides that it doesn’t really matter as long as he believes it is real.
More than 97% of the food on New Hope is manufactured in agricultural processing facilities. These facilities are enclosed by huge domes & are often referred to as “ag domes” by most citizens. The domes are located near the shore of New Hope’s ocean just outside the city limits of New Hope City. The labor force in the facilities consist of Basics & a large number of Zhuh-Zhuh immigrants. Foods produced in the domes are then sold to grocery stores & restaurants.
Only 15% of the planet New Hope is habitable. It has one very small ocean (implied by the cover art), and several lakes. Though some argue that the ocean is actually a lake of gigantic proportions, its currents, tides, & position as the principal component of the planet’s hydrosphere satisfies the definition of an ocean. It is around the ocean & the lakes where life is possible.
Foods can be made entirely from protein chemicals. However, the domes & ocean make it possible to include nutrients from plant matter & marine life along with the protein chemicals. The acreage required to raise any appreciable number of cattle, sheep, pigs, or fowl just isn’t available.
Some fine dining establishments do import freeze dried meats from other systems & reconstitute the meats in their kitchens. These meats are very expensive. A small hamburger will cost over 50 credits & a fine steak could cost as much as a week’s salary.
Finally, there are a few very rich families on New Hope that do raise a few animals for consumption. These animals have to be guarded & are under constant surveillance.
For the most part, the majority of space faring people & their descendants have never eaten real meat. Does the food they eat taste like real meat? Well, as far as they know, it does.
Next time, we’ll talk about the cute Robo-Serve 3 & other androids found in the New Hope work force.
* The maid is by Shadowforge; the mutant rat is from Games Workshop’s Necromunda line; the 2 detectives are Foundry; the street walker is from Reaper’s Chronoscope line; the card building is from Necromunda; the plants are aquarium plants; & the mat is an old bedsheet painted with Krylon paints.