Aug 5, 2013

Test Tube Burger - The Solution to the World Hunger Crisis?

The world's first test tube burger will be unveiled in London today.

The burger cost 220,000 pounds in development and was created entirely in the lab.

Using stem cells to preclude the necessity for animal flesh, this burger is the first real 'meat' burger that fits ethical vegan and vegetarian diets.


But this is about much more than feeding veg*ns. 

Professor Mark Post made a 5oz patty out of 20,000 tiny strips of meat grown from cow stem cells in hopes of bringing about a food revolution. Perhaps he's dreaming too big, but Professor Post hopes to see his in-vitro meat in supermarkets in the next 10 to 20 years.

The meat not only sidesteps the veg*n issue of killing animals, but may also reduce the greenhouse gas emissions from raising livestock (given that all of those animals would no longer be bred/born were the meat industry to change in this way). Growing in-vitro meat releases 78% to 95% less greenhouse gas than raising livestock. 

1kg of the synthetic meat also only requires 2kg of feed to grow, as compared to the 4kg to 10kg required for animal meat. It costs 99% less land than livestock and requires 82% to 96% less water. Thus in-vitro meat may be a solution to the problem of producing enough food to sustain all of the people in the world.

The research was funded by an anonymous philanthropist who has a history of 'turning everything to gold,' according to Professor Post, which makes me wonder whether the philanthropist is primarily concerned with helping humanity with this Frankenmeat or whether s/he is more interested in helping his/her own bank account.

Thoughts?

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