Take out meals – a walk down history lane

Take out meals refer to food prepared at a restaurant and purchased by people with the intention of eating the food somewhere else other than the restaurant. The concept of take-out meals dates back to roadside stalls that sold food in ancient Greece and Rome. This is backed up by a large number of thermopolia discovered by archeologists in ancient Greece.

Take out meals - a walk down history lane

Thermopolias were service counters that provided food meant to be taken away and eaten. In medieval London and Europe, the takeout trend was apparent with street vendors who sold hot roasted meats, meat pies, cheese, and eggs. Although, back in the days, these food vendors were mostly frequented by the urban poor that lacked the needed equipment to prepare home-cooked meals. In the 18th and 19th century, many African women made their daily income from selling street foods ranging from fruits to biscuits, cakes, pralines, pies, and nuts on the streets of America. When the industrial revolution arrived, there was an increase in the amount of take-out food vendors. It was during this period that the hamburger was introduced to America, greatly supplementing the diets of poor industrial workers.

In the modern Era, street food vendors have evolved into take-out establishments due to globalization and also health and safety legislative concerns. The takeout food industry has developed since the invention of computers. There’s been an infuse of “drive-thrus” were patrons order, pay and receive their meals without leaving the comfort of their cars. In most developed countries like Japan, America, Canada, and Europe, food can now be ordered online and delivered to customers doorsteps or picked up by customers. These foods are safely packaged with recyclable materials, putting to rest the concerns of waste disposal. The menu ranges from pizzas to sandwiches, burgers, rice, Chinese, Italian, Mexican and Thai cuisines. Convenient and fast cures a wide range of hunger and taste preferences with its flexible menu options. Caters to all ages and professions save time on meal prep time, can constitute a fun outing for a family in terms of picnic boxes. Can be ordered for breakfast, lunch or dinner.

One wonders what the future of the take-out industry would be, maybe a food robot delivery system? Drone delivery? Automated drive-thrus? Food bars littered across parks where one can grab a quick meal while taking a stroll or viewing nature. One can never tell, the food industry evolves every day to suit the tastes and preferences of customers.