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We Could Be Eating Test-tube Meat Very Soon

We Could Be Eating Test-tube Meat Very Soon

Scientists predict that the first test-tube hamburger will be produced this OctoberDr Mark Post, the head of physiology at Maastricht University, has been at work to develop an efficient method to grow skeletal muscle tissue from cows’ stem cells. Currently he and his team have been able to grow small, thin sheets cow muscle that are 3cm long, 1.5cm wide and half a millimeter thick. 3,000 pieces of muscle and a few hundred pieces of fatty tissue are needed to make a burger.

Speaking at a symposium by the name of “The Next Agricultural Revolution” at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in Vancouver, Post gave some compelling reasons for why we need to produce test-tube meat:

- to meet a growing demand for meat around the world (meat demand will double in the next 40 years);

- to lessen greenhouse gas emissions (methane released from livestock is contributing to global warming);

- to preserve pasture lands, the majority of which are already in use.

A 2010 a report by the United Nations Environment Program has called for a global vegetarian diet.

An anonymous private investor is funding Post’s efforts. In conversation with the Dutch Society of Vegetarians, Post says that the group’s chair has “estimated half its members would start to eat meat if he could guarantee that it cost fewer animal lives.”

Another scientist, Patrick Brown of the Stanford University School of Medicine, is also devoting himself to making a product to mimic meat, thanks to funding from a venture capital firm. Concerned that developing meat in the laboratory from animal sources will still come with numerous disadvantages, Brown is seeking to create a meat-like produce from only animal sources.

Post is hopeful that Heston Blumenthal, the chef and owner of the three Michelin-starred Fat Duck restaurant in Berkshire in the UK, will cook his test tube meat. Not too surprisingly, no one in the meat industry has shown interest in Post’s or Brown’s endeavors.

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275 comments

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10:34AM PST on Jan 15, 2013

Thank you for sharing.

2:23AM PDT on Nov 1, 2012

Thank you

9:11AM PDT on Jun 13, 2012

yuck. id rather go vegan

2:27PM PDT on Apr 4, 2012

it may end up increasing the cost of eggs and milk if the farm animal population would decrease as a result. there probably are all sorts of ramifications, but it would not happen over night. it will be interesting...

could goose down and wool and silk be created this way too? eggs? milk? hmm? i've thought about the stem cell creation of food, but don't really know much about how it is done or what can be done and how. would like to know more.

2:18PM PDT on Apr 4, 2012

well, the picture is ridiculous! this labratory grown muscleit seems to be the same as meat from a slaughtered animal, if not better because it wouldn't be injected with nasty things and fed unnatural foods, and live in nasty conditions. i have been vegetarian and trying to be vegan long enough that eating animal muscle repulses me no matter what the source. otherwise, it seems like a good plan...what is needed to grow this kind of meat?

having been an obnivore most of my life, i find gardein meat substitute satisfactory as well as soy and almond "milks" and vegan mayonnaise. i'm still waiting for a decent cheese substitute.
i don't think they could be grown nor probably eggs which i still miss.

once people get used to it and if the price is right, it will be accepted by the obnivores and probably will be much more healthy in addition to cutting down on the suffering of many animals...no we won't have stray cows and pigs running the streets... breeding will decrease. it will be better for the environment and save land hopefully to be used for better purposes.

12:31PM PDT on Mar 31, 2012

is this like spam?

8:03AM PST on Mar 2, 2012

THANK GOODNESS, I AM VEGETARIAN!!!

7:51PM PST on Feb 29, 2012

ewww...i won't be eating that...or any other kind of meat.

6:34PM PST on Feb 27, 2012

well, at least meat eaters won't have any more excuses to support the slaughter of innocent animals.

4:58PM PST on Feb 27, 2012

Oh No! no! no! Why are we gonna eat cloned cows!?! Excuse me....I'm going to the bathroom cause I'm gonna puke. x-p

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Kristina Chew Kristina Chew teaches and writes about ancient Greek and Latin and is Online Advocacy and Marketing... more
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