Bacon-Scented Patch Aims to Help Vegans Resist Meat Cravings

A professor of experimental psychology recently unveiled a wearable patch infused with bacon flavor that is supposed to help curb meat cravings.

Charles Spence, a professor of experimental psychology at the University of Oxford, teamed up with plant-based food company Strong Roots to create a patch that, when scratched, produces a smell similar to that of cooked bacon. The idea behind this strange invention is that the human mind is connected to our senses of taste and smell, and that certain smells can significantly reduce food cravings.

“Studies have shown that scent can reduce food cravings,” Spence said. “Our sense of smell is strongly connected to our ability to taste therefore experiencing food related cues such as smelling a bacon aroma, can lead us to imagine the act of eating that food. Imagine eating enough bacon and you might find yourself sated.”

Dubbed the world’s first meat patch, Spence’s weird creation is supposed to be worn like a nicotine patch, only instead of slowly releasing nicotine into the wearer’s body, it’s supposed to be scratched for an instant olfactory dose of bacon. Likely wearers include lifelong mat-eaters trying to go vegan, but struggling with cravings.

The meat patches are currently undergoing trials in UK cities like London, Liverpool and Leeds, but plant-based food company Strong Roots claims that the innovative product will become more widely available in the near future. A Strong Roots spokesperson told reporters that the company is confident the patches will be effective in helping people abstain from eating actual bacon.

“It’s Veganuary and we know that more people than ever are trying to adopt a plant-based lifestyle this year,” Samuel Dennigan, the founder of Strong Roots, said. “However, the research shows just how many of them struggle with their resolution, so we wanted to offer a helping hand, and have developed the world’s first ever meat-patch. We hope it goes some way to supporting all the meat-a-holics out there.”

While Professor Spence and Strong Roots appear confident in the new meat patches, regular users are much more skeptical.

“If I can smell bacon I’ll want to eat bacon – it’s very simple,” 45-year-old Graham Innes told The Telegraph. “I’m not going to be satisfied with a cheese sandwich when I can smell bacon coming from the patch – it might work for some, but it would never work for me, I’d be down the nearest cafe for a bacon roll.”


“This surely can’t be an actual thing,” another person tweeted.