Space Food: (Top row) Italian Vegetables, Potatoes au Gratin, and Dried Pears.
(Bottom row) Salmon, Frankfurters, and Tea with Lemon
and volume have always been primary design factors for every piece of hardware
launched into space. The Shuttle is no exception. Weight allowed for food
is limited to 3.8 pounds per person per day, which includes the 1 pound
of packaging for each person each day.
Foods are individually packaged and stowed for easy handling in the zero gravity of space. All food is precooked or processed so it requires no refrigeration and is either ready to eat or can be prepared simply by adding water or by heating. The only exceptions are the fresh fruit and vegetables stowed in the fresh food locker. Without refrigeration, the carrots and celery must be eaten within the first two days of the flight or they will spoil. The main categories of space food are: Rehydratable (R) Food, Thermostabalized Food, Intermediate Moisture (IM) Foods, Natural Form (NF) Foods, Irradiated (I) Meat, Condiments, Shelf Stable Tortillas