ASITAF, on several occasions, celebrated with commemorative covers the delivery into space of FLIGHT WATER and Italian BONUS SPACE FOOD.
With this exhibition we wanted to answer the question "What do astronauts eat in space?" by exhibiting a selection of authentic Space Food samples from various countries, and using a set of educational panels that illustrate how the "space cuisine" has evolved in the history of human flight in space, progressing from initial scientific experiments into a real convivial opportunity.
Scientists at the time of the early flights did not know whether in conditions of weightlessness humans were able to swallow, or how the digestive system would behave. Furthermore, in the pioneering era the food safety was necessarily more important than its taste, and the rather rudimentary technologies offered limited possibilities.
Progressively, eating in space became an experience much more similar to the terrestrial one. Long-term stay in Space Stations continues to pose new challenges for nutritionists.
The panels also illustrate ongoing research and the "space nutrition of the future", which aims at responding to the new demands of long interplanetary journeys and will see space explorers preparing their own lunch with the help of the 3-D printer.
Even in space, the genius of Italian cuisine provides an important contribution.
The exhibition, which currently includes over 100 samples of “space food”, shows the “standard space food” of NASA, ROSKOSMOS (Russia), and CNSA (China). It also offers a sample bonus food produced in Italy for ESA, for various Italian and European missions, and samples from JAXA (Japan).
The exhibition was exhibited for the first time from 15 to 30 November 2014 in Verano Brianza - hometown of Paolo Nespoli.
It was presented, again in Czech and English versions, at Prague Eurospace 2016 from 12 to 17 April 2016, and then in Crescentino (Vercelli) in the “ROSA TRA LE STELLE” (PINK AMONG THE STARS event, from 28 May to 12 June 2016, Villarbasse (during the “25 YEAR OF ITALIAN ASTRONAUTS IN SPACE” from 25 March to 9 April 2017), Milano (FLIGHT FAIR and 10th Anniversary of the Convivium of Italian Cuisine in Space , 2 - 4 June 2017), Spotorno (SCIENZA FANTASTICA 2017 , 24 - 30 July 2017), Torino ALTEC (14-15 October 2017), Milano (ITALIAFIL 2018 , 23-24 March 2018), Verano Brianza (Nespoli Day, 10 June 2018) enriched with the samples contributes by Paolo Nespoli, Spotorno (SCIENZA FANTASTICA 2018 , 21-30 July 2018), Moncalvo , (Asti) 64th Truffle Fair, 20-28 October 2018, Aosta (Maison & Loisir 24-28 April 2019), Villarbasse (50th ANNIVERSARY OF THE FIRST MOONLANDING, 18-26 May 2019), Torino-Pingone (IQOS SPACE EXPERIENCE, 10-20 July 2019), Spotorno (SCIENZA FANTASTICA 2019, 20-28 July 2019), Acqui Terme (50 YEARS ON THE MOON, 26 October-3 November 2019), Torino (SPACE ADVENTURE , 22 November 2019 – 30 May 2020), Fiumefreddo Bruzio (Cosenza) SPACE ADVENTURE 10 July – 31 October 2021, Istanbul (Turchia) SPACE ADVENTURE , 10 July – 31 October 2021, Ankara-Graziantep (Turchia) SPACE ADVENTURE, 23 April – 6 June 2022, Liberec (Repubblica Ceca) 12-15 October 2022.