Gregory's Blog

Mind Blown – Henry Ford’s green vision!

The man who brought motorcars to the masses wanted them to be made and fuelled with soya beans. Ford Model Soy was planned for production when Henry Ford died in 1946 and World War 2 intervened. It’s chassis and plastic parts were soya based. A vegetarian, Henry Ford had also put his scientists to work on making soybeans edible and they produced the first textured soya protein, achieved with a spinning process.

I stumbled across this fascinating blog from Nadia Berenstein when looking for one of the ingredients in my original VegeBurger. Turns out it was developed from the technology that Ford originated. Bontrae was the best textured soya protein I could find, and it was spun through translucent platinum spinnerets, something I never knew. Sadly, General Mills seem to have been a little ahead of their time and are no more.

Note: This image of this car is the same as that of the car built from hemp that we have often heard of. Ford was experimenting with both high-yielding versatile crops. He ate the soya. Did he smoke the pot?

Get the full story:

A Taste of Futures Past: The Rise and Fall of Spun Soy Protein

 

http://nadiaberenstein.com/blog/2017/6/5/tastethefuture

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6 thoughts on “Mind Blown – Henry Ford’s green vision!”

    1. Been looking into this and there’s convincing (and conflicting) assertions on both side. They certainly made plastics from soya and hemp, and made fuels out of both as well. At this stage I really don’t give a damn which, but for sure the soya protein I chose for VegeBurger was conceived at Ford.

      This one from The Henry Ford Museum makes sense to me. https://www.thehenryford.org/collections-and-research/digital-resources/popular-topics/soy-bean-car/.

    1. I thought it beautifully ironic that the man most responsible for damaging the planet with road networks and vehicle fumes was a vegetarian pursuing a green vision, which was scuppered because of WW2, and his death. Is there a lesson in there somewhere?

  1. Alan McThredder

    Cheech and Chong made a movie where their VW bus was made of marijuana. When the exhaust blows hot fumes on the bodywork it catches fire and gets everyone stoned that they drive past. I remember a police cop stops them and a wonderful conversation follows as he breathes in the smoke. Damn I am getting old!

    Best of Luck Greg.- always interesting.

    1. Hey Alan, great to hear from you. Guess I was too busy selling brown rice when that movie came out to have caught it. Hope you are well and by gum, those years do fly by!
      Peas and love, Greg

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