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Biotech Science

In-Vitro Muscle Cells, It's What's For Dinner 619

wanzeo writes "Within the last decade, many of us have experienced the encroachment of ethics into our mealtime. Phrases such as vegetarian, vegan, organic, bST, GMO, etc. have become part of common grocery store advertising. The most recent addition to the list of ethically charged food is in-vitro meat, or meat that was cultured in a petri dish, and was never part of a live animal. The project has been brought to fruition by Mark Post, a biologist at the University of Maastricht in the Netherlands. Grown using animal stem-cells on a nutrient medium, the nearly see-through strips of muscle would need to be stacked nearly 3,000 times to approach the thickness of a burger. The practice promises to be more humane, sustainable, and efficient than conventional meats, with one analysis suggesting it would, 'use 35 to 60 percent less energy, emit 80 to 95 percent less greenhouse gas and use around 98 percent less land.' In a world where nearly half of all crop production is used to feed livestock, a move towards artificial meat may be inevitable."
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In-Vitro Muscle Cells, It's What's For Dinner

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday November 13, 2011 @11:03AM (#38040966)

    Soylent Green. Because you're what's for dinner.

    • by TheLink ( 130905 )
      How's that off-topic?

      There was also a short sci-fi story (can't remember the title) where the origin of the popular in-vitro meat turns out to be human (from one of the scientists/researchers). Can't remember the details though...
      • by Opyros ( 1153335 ) on Sunday November 13, 2011 @01:59PM (#38042004) Journal
        Possibly The Food of the Gods [blogspot.com], by Arthur C. Clarke?
      • A short story about a future trade in cloned Celebrity Meat:
        http://www.omegacom.demon.co.uk/meat.htm [demon.co.uk]

        Like a lot of cleaners, I started out in public health, running DNA analyses in a forensic laboratory. That was ten years ago, when the meat trade was at its height. We were processing ten thousand samples a day. Most were fakes. 'Princess Di' for instance, was originally a basal cell cancer excised from a fifty-eight-year-old Albanian woman, but it didn't stop the meatleggers moving twenty tonnes of product. Then fans started doing their own DNA analyses, and growing their own supplies. Once someone has started a cloned cell line, anyone with an incubator, access to a few common biochemicals, and basic knowledge about cell culture can keep it going indefinitely. By the time I joined one of the vat-busting teams, most of the meat we were chasing was one hundred per cent genuine cloned celebrity. As soon as anyone managed to get a viable scrap of tissue, that was it. The meat was out there. The only way to stop it was to bust the places where it was grown.

    • by zevans ( 101778 )

      Cannibalism in sci-fi is a popular choice. Weird. Some examples off the top of my head:

      Farnham's Freehold (Heinlein)
      (and Stranger. And Number of the Beast)
      Bordered in Black (Niven)
      Consider Phlebas (Banks)

    • by definate ( 876684 ) on Sunday November 13, 2011 @08:56PM (#38044302)

      This sounds awesome. I love meat, best part of any meal, however I don't like the whole killing cattle thing, but it's a necessary evil for me, as I'm not willing to give it up. However, this would be the best of both worlds.

      It will be able to be mass manufactured in large quantities, and hopefully cheaply. It reduces energy usage. Reduces carbon emissions. Reduces land usage.

      These are all HUGE wins. As long as food companies get serious on it (which they likely would), then you can get flawless, tasty steaks, for cheap as fuck. I don't care if it's not "authentic", I wan't my pseudo-lamb meat!

      My guess is it would take a while before they were able to get it up to the mass manufacturing stage, and even further before they're producing meat with the nice tasting fat, and other impurities. Though, once it's at the mass manufacturing stage, people will start eating it, mainly people who like gamey meat though.

  • Monsanto (Score:5, Insightful)

    by scifiber_phil ( 630217 ) on Sunday November 13, 2011 @11:08AM (#38040994)
    Monsanto will patent it, claim real meat infringes, then make us all eat it. No labelling of fake meat will be allowed, so we won't know what we are eating. At that time maybe I'll try the frankensalmon.
    • Re:Monsanto (Score:5, Insightful)

      by broken_chaos ( 1188549 ) on Sunday November 13, 2011 @12:22PM (#38041410)

      I'm actually fine with this idea of 'fake meat', as long as it's done well. If it tastes and behaves similarly to 'real meat', and is made from actual real animal cells... I'm just fine with the idea. I'd be more worried about genetically modified meat -- but this stuff is not modified in that way. It's just cells grown in a non-standard incubation system (i.e., a lab dish, as opposed to a sack of other meat cells).

      • Re:Monsanto (Score:5, Interesting)

        by ArcherB ( 796902 ) on Sunday November 13, 2011 @01:27PM (#38041776) Journal

        I'm actually fine with this idea of 'fake meat', as long as it's done well. If it tastes and behaves similarly to 'real meat', and is made from actual real animal cells... I'm just fine with the idea...

        I don't see this tasting or feeling anything like real meat. Sure, it may be layers of mean protein stacked on top of each other, but meat is more than that. Meat comes with fat. That's the stuff that makes meat juicy. Sometimes, meat comes on a bone. That's like a handle. Meat can be light or dark depending on what part of the animal it comes from. It may be tough, meaning that it must be cooked for hours to tender it up. It may be tender, meaning that it should be flash cooked. And finally, meat has a texture, or "grain" that needs to be adhered to. You must cut meat AGAINST the grain or else it becomes stringy and tough. I don't care how well a piece of meat is cooked, if it's cut wrong, it's tough.

        Anyway, my point is that petri-meat will have none of these qualities. The only thing I see this good for is ground meat where the texture doesn't matter, and even then, animal fat will have to be added from another petri dish from a biproduct of a real animal, which kinda defeats the purpose. That may not work either because I don't know if there is a flavor difference between fat grown on a cows back vs the fat that grows in the skin. Come to think of it, bacon fat tastes a whole to different than pork chop fat.

        We will not have a synthetic steak that will fool anyone until we are capable of growing full organs as layers of muscle protein is not going to full anyone that has ever eaten meat before.

        • Edible insects (Score:5, Interesting)

          by xaxa ( 988988 ) on Sunday November 13, 2011 @02:05PM (#38042030)

          It's predicted that meat will be too expensive for most of the world's population by 2050, and some scientists have proposed that westerners should eat insects instead. See entomophagy [wikipedia.org].

          I'd quite like to try some of the big insects. I've tried some tiny ones (waxworms and crickets) and found them tasteless except for the sauce they were served in.

          Insects have some advantages over mammals, birds and fish. They like to live in colonies, which is good for factory farming. They're very high in protein -- sometimes as much as 70%, compared to about 15% by mass for a cow. They take a lot less energy to produce. And many humans already eat them, unlike in-vitro muscle.

          • Re:Edible insects (Score:4, Interesting)

            by DesScorp ( 410532 ) <DesScorp.Gmail@com> on Sunday November 13, 2011 @03:28PM (#38042582) Homepage Journal

            It's predicted that meat will be too expensive for most of the world's population by 2050, and some scientists have proposed that westerners should eat insects instead.

            We've heard this Malthusian nonsense for two centuries now, and not only is it still not true, there's more abundance of food (including meat) than ever before, even with a population hitting 7 billion. As long as there are free markets, there will be enough food. Farmers and companies will find a way.

        • Re:Monsanto (Score:4, Informative)

          by dbIII ( 701233 ) on Sunday November 13, 2011 @09:36PM (#38044536)
          All of those points above have been thought of which is why it's taking so long to develop something that resembles muscle tissue. Here's an interview of a scientist working on it - audio and transcript:
          Growing meat in the lab (http://www.abc.net.au/rn/scienceshow/stories/2011/3281329.htm)
      • If it cannot moo, then it isn't real meat...
  • Embrace the Future (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Sponge Bath ( 413667 ) on Sunday November 13, 2011 @11:09AM (#38041000)

    Synthetic meat is still too expensive. This process will be optimized to a fabricated protein paste fed through a tube to power your assigned functions until you wear out and are flushed. Witness the progress of humanity.

  • No thanks (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday November 13, 2011 @11:09AM (#38041002)
    If I want non meat protein, there's plenty of plant-based sources. If I want meat, I prefer it come from an animal. I have no qualms about killing an animal for meat. I also find sanitized supermarket packaging retarded. Trying to detach meat from the idea an animal died for it is twisted. People shouldn't hind from that fact and be respectful an animal died for the meat.
    • Did you actually read the summary? It is possible that a lot of energy can be saved by this process. The research costs are probably high, but that can be amortised in the long run.

      Trying to detach meat from the idea an animal died for it is twisted. People shouldn't hind from that fact and be respectful an animal died for the meat.

      In this case, an animal did not die for it. It is about as ethical or unethical as any other synthetically produced food.

    • Re:No thanks (Score:4, Interesting)

      by green1 ( 322787 ) on Sunday November 13, 2011 @02:07PM (#38042048)

      It is actually interesting to see this article on here today, I was actually just reading information about the progression of human ethics and morality. From the past where anyone not of your own religion, skin colour, or gender were considered non-human and treated accordingly, to today's world where discrimination still happens, but is generally recognized as such within society and strongly discouraged, to a future where everyone is truly equal and discrimination is a thing of the past. One of the big thoughts brought forward of course is that in the past while people of other groups were treated as non-human, it was taken for granted that this was in fact the case, and while there may have been some people who believed otherwise, it was a generally accepted fact in society.

      Now to the point, if our sense of morality was so different in the past, where will it be in the future? There is an argument that the way we treat (and eat) animals right now will look not much different to a person a couple hundred years from now than the way we now see the idea of how other races were treated a couple hundred years ago. I don't know if I agree with that sentiment or not, however it seems a logical extension of where morality has been to where it is going, and as a person living in today's society it is impossible to see what cultural biases might be clouding my judgement.

      That said, I love meat, I plan to keep eating meat. Will I eat synthetically grown meat? I don't see why not, assuming they manage to make it taste close enough to the real thing (which is a tougher task than one might think, what we taste in meat is not just the raw muscle itself, but is also influenced by the way the animal as exercised, and the food it has eaten.)

      Of course one more jab on the animal rights front, many animals alive today would simply not be here if humans didn't eat meat. While it may seem noble to not slaughter the cows for beef, it must be realized that if humans didn't eat meat most of those cows would never have lived in the first place. (same for almost any animal that humans regularly eat) I know many people on here were talking about feedlotting vs grazing, and while I know there must be a lot of feedlots, I've never seen one, and yet I can't drive five minutes on the highway around here without seeing fields full of grazing cows. I'm not sure if that's just coincidence, of if feedlots aren't as common in my area as real grazing is?

      • That said, I love meat, I plan to keep eating meat. Will I eat synthetically grown meat? I don't see why not, assuming they manage to make it taste close enough to the real thing (which is a tougher task than one might think, what we taste in meat is not just the raw muscle itself, but is also influenced by the way the animal as exercised, and the food it has eaten.)

        That's a point a lot of people have raised... I'm actually surprised TFA didn't address it, because it was one of the first questions that Bob McDonald (of Quirks and Quarks on CBC, in Canada) asked the scientist, about 2 years ago when I first heard about this kind of project.

        The scientist's answer wasn't that the meat was super tough, rather that it was very tender. The problem with the meat was that it was just a hunk of meat grown in a test tube... the science behind growing the meat had been well estab

  • by TaoPhoenix ( 980487 ) <TaoPhoenix@yahoo.com> on Sunday November 13, 2011 @11:09AM (#38041006) Journal

    Offtopic I know,

    but are we stuck with that big square box now?

    • I like it. Followed the link and discovered autoap. Been passively looking for something like that for a while.
      • by Hentes ( 2461350 )

        Been passively looking for something like that for a while.

        Here you are [sourceforge.net]. Seriously, if I want to visit Sourceforge, I will go to Sourceforge, not go to /. and then follow a link.

  • by nido ( 102070 ) <nido56 AT yahoo DOT com> on Sunday November 13, 2011 @11:10AM (#38041008) Homepage

    Vegetarians like to say that they're getting all the protein they need. And by the numbers, beans and grains do have good amounts of protein... But these proteins are locked up for storage, and have Protease inhibitors [wikipedia.org] to interfere with their digestion. Trypsin [wikipedia.org] is what makes Soybeans so inedible...

    Potatoes are the best vegan source of protein, because potatoes' defenses are against the microbes that cause rotting, whereas the above-ground portions of the plants have all sorts of defenses against animals.

    Gelatin is a good source of protein because of the kinds of amino acids that it has, and does NOT have. The recent news about synthetic human gelatin [slashdot.org] is a bit more important than this form of synthetic meat, methinks.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by hedwards ( 940851 )

      Nonsense there are plenty of dietary sources of protein that don't include eating meat. You make it sound like soybeans are the only source. Ultimately the reason why most vegans and vegetarians don't get enough meat isn't that it's impossible it's that they aren't doing their homework to make sure that they're getting the range of proteins necessary to get the complete ones that the body can't synthesize.

      I've personally known vegan powerlifters that showed absolutely no signs of protein deficiency.

    • by Hentes ( 2461350 ) on Sunday November 13, 2011 @12:15PM (#38041382)

      There are many types of vegetarians, those who consume milk, eggs and honey won't have such problems. Also, most vegetarians I know eat fish. And even the hardcore zealots can survive by eating algae [wikipedia.org]. And they won't eat gelatin as it's made of animal bones.

      • Also, most vegetarians I know eat fish.

        Those aren't vegetarians. Really, it bugs me when people call themselves "vegetarian" even though they eat meat.

    • bullshit. (Score:5, Informative)

      by nimbius ( 983462 ) on Sunday November 13, 2011 @12:23PM (#38041416) Homepage
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soybean [wikipedia.org]
      For human consumption, soybeans must be cooked with "wet" heat to destroy the trypsin inhibitors (serine protease inhibitors). Raw soybeans, including the immature green form, are toxic to humans, swine, chickens, and in fact, all monogastric animals.[12]
      gelatin, for its limited range of benefits that can easily be found in plants, is rather controversial too, as its potential to transmit BSE http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gelatin#Safety_concerns [wikipedia.org] why not try some hempseed or flax seed instead?
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hemp_seed [wikipedia.org]
      • by nido ( 102070 )

        Besides the enzyme inhibitors, another poison in soybeans are the isoflavones, aka "phyto-estrogens". Estrogenic substances decrease the availability of oxygen and tell tissues to divide. Generally speaking, soybeans are only edible fermented, as a condiment. Cooking does not deactivate the isoflavones.

        gelatin, for its limited range of benefits that can easily be found in plants, is rather controversial too, as its potential to transmit BSE /wiki/Gelatin#Safety_concerns [wikipedia.org] why not try some hempseed or flax seed instead?
        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hemp_seed [wikipedia.org] [wikipedia.org]

        Hempseed and flaxseed are rich sources of polyunsaturated fatty acides, which cause lipid peroxidation [wikipedia.org], thereby increasing a body's vitamin E requirements.

        Potatoes and tubers are the best vegan source of prot

  • Ethics? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by HornWumpus ( 783565 ) on Sunday November 13, 2011 @11:10AM (#38041014)

    Just because PETA says something is unethical doesn't mean it is.

    There is nothing unethical about eating meat.

    There is nothing unethical about eating whale, they are about as smart as pigs.

    There is nothing unethical about eating dog or cat. It's just what you are used to.

    It is unethical to try to impose your opinions on others. I'm looking at you herbivores.

    • Re:Ethics? (Score:4, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward on Sunday November 13, 2011 @11:26AM (#38041100)

      Cats and dogs were never part of daily food for the vast majority of human mankind throughout history.

      Eating whales WAS not unethical. Contributing NOW to the extinction of a mammal (or animal in general) IS unethical. It's a prime example for unethical behavior.
      Their IQ is irrelevant for your own behavior, but I suspect YOUR IQ is pretty low. So...Can I eat you? It shouldn't be unethical as you are as smart as a pig.

      • Actually, the domestic dog was used a food source for much of human history. Dogs were great to have around for protection and hunting, but when food was scarce, they were also great for eating. People couldn't always walk down the street to the supermarket to get food.
    • It is unethical to try to impose your opinions on others. I'm looking at you herbivores.

      Most of the vegans that I know make no attempt to impose their lifestyle on anyone else. Maybe your experiance is different. PETA is a fringe group that does not remotely represent the typical vegetarian or vegan. Vegans can be kind of fussy, though. Apparently serving something that is only 95% vegan is considered unacceptable. Who knew?

      I personally have no issues with meat. Cows aren't out in the pasture composing poetry. They're little more than machines that turn grass and corn into meat and manu

      • by engun ( 1234934 )
        Would that not mean that mentally deficient humans, could also be considered little more than machines and potentially be kept in a pen and eaten?
    • I'm a vegetarian that is very anti-peta; their "ethics" play no part in my decision. Unlike most, though, I was raised on a farm that had beef cattle and have pulled the trigger myself a few times.

      What is unethical is refusing to change when there are better options.

    • by saibot834 ( 1061528 ) on Sunday November 13, 2011 @12:59PM (#38041580)

      There is nothing unethical about eating meat.

      I seriously doubt that. These are the two most grave concerns:

      Animal pain. Animals do feel pain, and from the universal viewpoint of ethics, it doesn't matter whether it's you, me, some other human, an ape or a chicken that gets tortured. Pain is pain and our practices in factory farming causes a lot of it for only a little benefit, which is extremely unethical. (I know there are other approaches to animal's status, but there is no notable modern moral philosopher who disputes that the suffering of animals is a serious concern)

      Environment. Did you know that animal production accounts for more greenhouse gases than all of the world's transportation? Yup, and that's not some veggie organization that claims that, but the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) [un.org]. It also takes up a lot of water, energy and is responsible for much of the destruction of the jungle.

  • Chicken Little (Score:5, Informative)

    by tomhudson ( 43916 ) <barbara@hudson.barbara-hudson@com> on Sunday November 13, 2011 @11:10AM (#38041016) Journal
    I for one welcome our Vat-Grown Overlords [technovelgy.com]

    Chicken Little, a huge mass of cultured chicken breast, was kept alive by algae skimmed by nearly-slave labor from multistory towers of ponds surrounded by mirrors to focus the sunlight onto the ponds.

    Scum-skimming wasn't hard to learn. You got up at dawn. You gulped a breakfast sliced not long ago from Chicken Little and washed it down with Coffiest. You put on your coveralls and took the cargo net up to your tier. In blazing noon from sunrise to sunset you walked your acres of shallow tanks crusted with algae. If you walked slowly, every thirty seconds or so you spotted a patch at maturity, bursting with yummy carbohydrates. You skimmed the patch with your skimmer and slung it down the well, where it would be baled, or processed into glucose to feed Chicken Little, who would be sliced and packed to feed people from Baffinland to Little America.

    From The Space Merchants, by Frederik Pohl (w/CM Kornbluth).
    Published by St. Martin's Press in 1952

    Read the link for the references to the REAL "Chicken Little" experiment that started it all.

    • It is one of the very few science fiction books that predicted the future, right down to context sensitive advertising on flat screens and the takeover of government by capitalism gone berserk. I'm surprised it isn't as well known as 1984, because Orwell got most of it wrong while Pohl and Kornbluth got an awful lot right.
      • by pz ( 113803 )

        Orwell got most of it wrong

        You haven't been paying much attention, apparently.

        We live in a near police state where citizens are repeatedly urged by friendly, paternalistic voices over loudspeakers in places of common congregation that "if you see something, say something." We are video recorded everywhere (at least in London, but I suspect the same is true in most cities these days). While we don't yet have observation systems directly in our houses, we're coming remarkably close what with technology that sees quite well through wa

    • Read the link for the references to the REAL "Chicken Little" experiment that started it all.

      Then read this link [wikipedia.org] about the problems with the experiment, and then this link [wikipedia.org] which explains how the results of the first experiment are not now believed to be possible.

      Short version: "Chicken Little" is like cold fusion. It's received a lot of press, but the experiment has not withstood scrutiny by the scientific community. The experiment has never been able to be replicated, and further experiments show

  • Folding (Score:4, Informative)

    by Relyx ( 52619 ) on Sunday November 13, 2011 @11:10AM (#38041018)

    If you need to stack the sheets 3000 times in order to approach the thickness of meat, you only have to fold them 12 times.

  • Victimless Leather (Score:4, Interesting)

    by ideonexus ( 1257332 ) on Sunday November 13, 2011 @11:26AM (#38041104) Homepage Journal

    There was an art piece at the MOMA's Design and the Elastic Mind [moma.org] exhibit titled "Victimless Leather" which involved growing a batch of stem cells into the shape of a tiny jacket. The piece eventually had to be "killed" [grinding.be] when it grew out of control... as stem cells tend to do (and why their promise is over-exaggerated because they give you cancer [livescience.com]).

    I appreciate people working on innovations like this, but we are decades and decades away from getting anything practical out of it. The meat we get from mother nature has billions of years of natural selection going into it, making it grow more efficiently. We co-evolved with it, meaning we are selected to make to the most efficient use of its nutrients. It's going to take a lot of time in the lab to match the nutrition and efficiency of muscle meat produced from 3.5 billion years of evolution.

    • by ElectricTurtle ( 1171201 ) on Sunday November 13, 2011 @11:57AM (#38041284)
      The problem with your perspective is it assumes wrongly that this work is being done from scratch, read further out of context it would seem like you're saying that these researchers are creating tissue (and by extension a lifeform) that didn't exist before. This isn't the case. Natural selection isn't being thrown out the window, all that work is simply being isolated, packaged, and controlled. It will probably be adjusted as the work proceeds, but that isn't surprising considering the 'natural' process you vaunt in fact is focused on 'good enough' solutions. Life is a process for gene replication and everything else is gravy. Artificial selection is by definition more intelligent and efficient than natural selection, and unlike natural selection it can have goals in excess of simple gene survival.
  • by punker ( 320575 ) on Sunday November 13, 2011 @11:27AM (#38041108)
    How long until he can grow bacon?
  • But is it kosher? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by blowdart ( 31458 ) on Sunday November 13, 2011 @11:38AM (#38041172) Homepage
    Serious question - if you clone pig meat, without the animal ever being grown, it won't have hooves - so is it kosher? What if you clone human meat from a volunteer? Is that cannibalism?
    • Serious Answer/Question - Who cares as long as it's tasty.

      But more specificly. Yes / No.

    • Re:But is it kosher? (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward on Sunday November 13, 2011 @12:14PM (#38041380)

      Genuine kashrut rabbi and lurker from about '98 here, if they culture the cells from a freshly kosher slaughtered kosher animal then it would be forever kosher.
      If the animal were not killed first it would be ever min hachai or flesh stripped from a living animal and a rarity for Jewish kosher law considered forbidden to all humans(from the law given to Noah when humans were first permitted meat rathen for the Jews at Mt Sinai).
      Since the kosher status is for meat of the animal there might be room for an interpretation that subsequent cells grown form any animal are no longer that creature but simply a vat grown blob removing any kosher concerns and considering it something akin to candy made from all synthetic materials.

  • by wisebabo ( 638845 ) on Sunday November 13, 2011 @11:47AM (#38041240) Journal

    Well research in this vein (ha ha) should continue if for no other reason than it would be great to be able to have a big juicy steak on a space ship! Of course one could see all sorts of interesting (bad) things happening due to the combination of zero-g, cosmic rays and endlessly multiplying cells!

    Does anyone know if there are any experiments in trying to make fish meat (sushi) along these lines? Pound for pound (or ounce for ounce) perfectly made uniform slabs of high grade fish have got to be the most expensive/valuable bits of non-human protein on the planet. I mean when a single (big) tuna costs several hundred thousand dollars in the Tokyo fish market, you know there could be profit for even an expensive technology.

    Finally, (I know this is gross), would eating synthesized human flesh be considered cannibalism? I mean is cannibalism bad because you had to kill someone to eat or is it bad because you are eating meat with similar DNA? (Actually, it's probably the latter because it exposes you to all sorts of diseases that normally wouldn't survive because you'd be eating a different species). And would it taste like chicken?

  • by Hartree ( 191324 ) on Sunday November 13, 2011 @12:16PM (#38041394)

    Why, this destroys cells. The very basis of all life! It must be stopped!

    You're such a villian that you even do it to your own cells!

    How many cells did you callously murder last night when you took a drink of alcohol? Or even accidently bite the inside of your cheek.

    And what about the flesh in between your fingers in the womb that you thoughtlessly put to cell death so you could selfishly have fingers. Or the skin cells you made thirst to death as formerly living shields against the outside world?

    Your whole existance is dedicated to torturing and murdering cellular life!

    This could be the start of whole industries of advocacy groups.

  • by NicknamesAreStupid ( 1040118 ) on Sunday November 13, 2011 @02:20PM (#38042134)
    . . . it will be sold. There is no morality on the bottom line.
  • It's real meat (Score:5, Interesting)

    by meerling ( 1487879 ) on Sunday November 13, 2011 @03:19PM (#38042510)
    It's not fake, artificial, or synthetic. It is cultured meat. I guess you could even call it vat meat, sci-fi has since before I was born.
    But in no way shape or form is it fake/artificial/synthetic. It was just grown without the rest of the animal.

    For those of you that think it would be a generic meat slurry, that's not correct either. It would actually be chicken, or beef, or mutton, or albacore tuna, or whatever species provided the cell sample for that batch. It's true that diet of the animal changes the meat flavors (some species more than others), but that can be duplicated by changing the nutrient feed.
    Again, this isn't a new idea, and some people have thought a lot about it, even though they didn't have the technology to do it yet. Three big things seem to keep coming up as it's big points. Efficiency, Product Control, No animal slaughters.

    Would I eat it? You know, the opportunity hasn't arisen, but I'd be willing to give it a try.
    At the moment, it's in kind of a primitive state, but eventually I'd expect those products to be of a higher quality than the old style.
    Although the first person to request a 'test tube steak' needs to get hit with a cutting board to the face, unless they're 12, in which case it's to be expected. :)

    Oh, one final thought for you. I know this idea seems strange at first, but really, do you actually know what you are eating right now? Do you actually claim to know what a twinkie is made of? Or for that matter, what is Disodium Inosinate, TBHQ, or Acesulfame Potassium? Sure you can find out, but you haven't, and yet you eat foods with these and many other 'mystery' ingredients all the time. So why raise a huge fuss over actual chicken meat that was grown a lab as opposed to a poop covered chicken hutch? Think about it.
  • by AbRASiON ( 589899 ) * on Sunday November 13, 2011 @06:12PM (#38043454) Journal

    You know the one the "chicken" is now grown in vats? Awesome.

  • by moniker127 ( 1290002 ) on Sunday November 13, 2011 @08:33PM (#38044190)
    If it tastes like meat, I'm all for it. But it doesn't say what it tastes like. But how could it possibly taste good? It may well be chemically identical to real meat, but I will bet dollars to soy based corn oil fried pastry replacements that it will taste like concentrated butthole. What is so wrong with normal, delicious, non factory meat? IM FROM MURIKA, SON, THATS WITH AN M. THE M STANDS FOR MEAT. WHERE IS IT?!

I THINK MAN INVENTED THE CAR by instinct. -- Jack Handley, The New Mexican, 1988.