Food in Antarctica


If you've been following my journey thus far, you've read all about how difficult life can be down in Antarctica. The weather is freezing for all but the most bundled. The sun in the summer stays out so long that it's impossible to sleep except in the very middle of the night. But most of all, the biggest issue is food.

It's fine for animals! Antarctic krill, little shrimps, are plentiful and form the basis of most animals' diets, from little penguins to giant whales. But the only vegetation that grows are some mosses on islands further out from the continent itself.

So where does food come from for people?

Back in the old days, explorers would just eat the seals and penguins, which didn't know any better but to walk right up to them to see what these funny looking people were. But that's all illegal now. And if you can't kill any animals to eat, and if there's no vegetables growing to eat, that means you just have to bring all of your food yourself.

Big boats, like the kind I was on, have massive stores of food on board. Since they are large enough to have refrigerators, they don't even need to worry about it going bad, so they can have fresh fish, meat, vegetables... anything. They're also large enough to have full kitchens, so the food you have on board isn't all that different than the food you'd eat at home. The boat just stocks up on supplies when it gets back to port in South America.