I’m not sure which is the more offensive way to create meat. There’s the current “factory farm” method where masses of hormone-jacked, antibiotics-injected cows are kept confined in what can only be called bovine concentration camps while they’re fed genetically modified corn, then slaughtered without compassion and subjected to diabolical meat-harvesting machinery that turns a cow carcass into corporate profits. On the other hand, there’s the new method being touted across the media: Test tube hamburgers made from thin strips of meat grown in a nutrient vat laced with bovine fetus stem cells. Yumm!
The test tube meat strips actually pulsate and twitch during their laboratory growth phase, by the way, and they’re ultimately ground up with strips of test tube fat grown in a similar way to produce a fatty hamburger-like substance. This has been accomplished by Professor Mark Post of Maastricht University in the Netherlands, who announced his team’s results at the American Academy for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) yesterday.
Test tube meat is here to save the world!
“In October we are going to provide a proof of concept showing out of stem cells we can make a product that looks, feels and hopefully tastes like meat,” says Mark Post at the announcement. Of course, what does processed meat actually taste like anyway? MSG, sodium nitrite and processed salt, for the most part. So making lab-grown meat taste like today’s factory-processed meat only requires the injection of a few additives into the growth culture. Imagine growing meat patties with MSG inside every cell!
Creating one hamburger will require 3,000 strips of meat, each just half a millimeter thick and grown in laboratory vats. Unlike a cow, which requires roughly two years to grow to the point of slaughter, a test tube burger can be produced in just six weeks.
The “benefits” of test tube hamburger production are being touted as substantial, including:
• More efficient conversion of plants to meat.
• Less environmental damage.
• More humane than killing animals.
• Is the only feasible way to feed more meat to the world.
Of course, they also said that GMOs would “feed the world.” Bill Gates calls genetically modified foods “high-tech agriculture” now, with the strong implication that technology is always superior to Mother Nature. But I’m not so sure about that. In fact, this whole thing sounds more than a little creepy to me.
Photo from BigStockPhoto