Many see the various forms of fusion cuisine as nothing more than a passing trend or fad. They may be right, however, I posit that they couldn't be more wrong. Why do I say that? Well for starters, the culinary industry isn't quite like any other out there. I'd say that the closest similar market is maybe the fashion industry. You buy food and eat it. You buy clothes and wear them. But they have their differences, too. Once you eat the food, it's gone. It's a one shot deal. Clothing, on the other hand, thankfully doesn't disappear after you buy it. Well taken care of clothes can last a very long time, perhaps even long enough to see the next cycle that brings it back to popularity. Fashion works in cycles, culinary doesn't...at least not as noticeably so. It isn't like steaks are popular now and won't be next year. Bacon will always be popular. So no, I don't believe that the culinary world works in cycles.
Why do I think that fusion cuisine is a lasting idea? Simple. You can't honestly tell me that when we colonize Mars and get some agriculture up and running that there won't be some rare and highly sought after ingredients being shipped back. Maybe we'll see some Martian moo cow steaks that will be combined with terrestrial cooking methods and ingredients. How about some purple Martian lettuce and some good old ranch dressing? Some "Ma'am," otherwise known as Martian ham, and of course we can't forget the "Macon." Yeah, that's right. Martian bacon. In other words, we'll have an entirely new planet's worth of ingredients to mix and match with our existing culinary styles.
Martian fusion dining will be available right next to the Latin fusion dining joint and vice versa. It will happen. There is no other logical conclusion. The only thing that may prevent that from happening is that we never colonize our sister planet. That won't stop chefs here on Earth from trying different combinations of culinary styles. Yeah, some will succeed with wildly popular combinations and some will fail with questionable results. That won't change the fact that being a chef is a highly creative endeavor if any kind of fusion is to be successfully created from traditional foods. Creative people with creative careers need to create to earn a living. Either that or they'll need to find a new job.
My overarching point to all of this is that people that think this whole thing is a passing fad are absolutely wrong. As resistant as some of Earth's cultures are to mixing with others, it will happen. With that will be the combining of cultural culinary cuisines as families sit down to lunch and dinner. It's even possible that the traditional ways of cooking certain ingredients will become rare while fusion cuisine becomes the norm. What we consider traditional today may actually become obsolete when the cultures of Earth simply become "the culture."
Tim Hiller is a freelance writer that has some fairly unique viewpoints on all manner of subjects including that of fusion cuisine. http://www.osorioslatinfusion.com