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Lab-grown Meat
February 20, 2012 3:53 PM   Subscribe

"In the beginning it will taste bland," says Professor Post.

Fom the BBC News:

"Pofessor Post's group at Maastricht University in the Netherlands has grown small pieces of muscle about 2cm long, 1cm wide and about a mm thick. They are off-white and resemble strips of calamari in appearance. These strips will be mixed with blood and artificially grown fat to produce a hamburger by the autumn."
posted by longsleeves (60 comments total) 10 users marked this as a favorite

 
Well it's this or jellyfish and crickets.
posted by The Whelk at 3:55 PM on February 20, 2012 [14 favorites]


I am totally OK with this.
posted by Cat Pie Hurts at 3:56 PM on February 20, 2012 [6 favorites]


Needs a "itsthefuturenow" tag.
posted by curious nu at 3:56 PM on February 20, 2012


Sure, I'd try it.
posted by jwmollman at 4:00 PM on February 20, 2012


If it ain't pink slime, then I ain't eatin' it.
posted by spilon at 4:01 PM on February 20, 2012 [2 favorites]


I'd read about this earlier in the day, but was still expecting a link to a story about Post Bran Flakes. Silly me.
posted by uosuaq at 4:01 PM on February 20, 2012 [3 favorites]


I'm pretty psyched
posted by grobstein at 4:01 PM on February 20, 2012


Tank: Here you go, buddy; "Breakfast of Champions."
Mouse: If you close your eyes, it almost feels like you're eating runny eggs.
Apoc: Yeah, or a bowl of snot.
Mouse: Do you know what it really reminds me of? Tasty Wheat. Did you ever eat Tasty Wheat?
Switch: No, but technically, neither did you.
Mouse: That's exactly my point. Exactly. Because you have to wonder: how do the machines know what Tasty Wheat tasted like? Maybe they got it wrong. Maybe what I think Tasty Wheat tasted like actually tasted like oatmeal, or tuna fish. That makes you wonder about a lot of things. You take chicken, for example: maybe they couldn't figure out what to make chicken taste like, which is why chicken tastes like everything.
posted by blaneyphoto at 4:01 PM on February 20, 2012 [4 favorites]


I waitng for DNA extraction to allow for really ...boutique meats.

"I'll have the Lincoln, Napoleon is too gamey "
posted by The Whelk at 4:02 PM on February 20, 2012 [20 favorites]


According to urban legend, KFC has been doing this for years. I mean, I knew a guy who knew a guy who's friend worked at KFC, and he swore there was a tank in the back where they grew the meat monster, and if you tapped on the tank, it'd look at you.
posted by xedrik at 4:05 PM on February 20, 2012 [12 favorites]


Or, new marriage costume, instead of feeding each other cake the couple feeds themselves each other.
posted by The Whelk at 4:08 PM on February 20, 2012 [1 favorite]


The article does not reveal from what the professor grew the 'artificial meat'. Soylent off-white?
posted by Cranberry at 4:09 PM on February 20, 2012


mmm I loves me a slice of Chicken Little
posted by jepler at 4:09 PM on February 20, 2012


"In the beginning it will taste bland," says Professor Post, "but I'm hopeful we'll have the Spice Weasel perfected by the end of the decade. BAM!"
posted by Horace Rumpole at 4:10 PM on February 20, 2012 [13 favorites]


Jerome [tasting meat made in lab]: It tastes familiar.
Ted: Beef?
Jerome: No.
Linda: Chicken? We'll take chicken.
Ted: What does it taste like?
Jerome: Despair.
Ted: Is it possible it just needs salt?
posted by amarynth at 4:13 PM on February 20, 2012 [17 favorites]


Double-ish.

Glad I wasn't the only one who thought of Oryx and Crake.
posted by arcticseal at 4:13 PM on February 20, 2012


The article does not reveal from what the professor grew the 'artificial meat'.

Magic beans. All it cost him was a cow. It's a great deal, really. For every cow you trade in, you get up to 4 hamburgers.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 4:13 PM on February 20, 2012


All natural, all English, 100% local and traditional vat grown lamb slabs. No clone lines! No enhanced genomes!
posted by The Whelk at 4:14 PM on February 20, 2012


So it's made with blood and leftover animal material from slaughterhouses. I think this guy has a different definition of vegetarian than I do.
posted by furiousxgeorge at 4:15 PM on February 20, 2012 [3 favorites]


The article does not reveal from what the professor grew the 'artificial meat'.

I know what I'd use.
posted by Kid Charlemagne at 4:16 PM on February 20, 2012


The article does not reveal from what the professor grew the 'artificial meat'.

He needed to put something in...
posted by Smart Dalek at 4:18 PM on February 20, 2012


According to urban legend, KFC has been doing this for years. I mean, I knew a guy who knew a guy who's friend worked at KFC, and he swore there was a tank in the back where they grew the meat monster, and if you tapped on the tank, it'd look at you.

Monster looked at you? That's it...
posted by Navelgazer at 4:18 PM on February 20, 2012 [1 favorite]


The cost of producing the hamburger will be £200,000 but Professor Post says that once the principle has been demonstrated, production techniques will be improved and costs will come down.

Phew, what a relief. I was all anxious that we were on the cusp of some brave new world in which every burger joint in the world would need a major research university attached to it just to serve up the day's meals, but the BBC thankfully set me straight on that.

Sometimes, the conventions of just-the-facts journalism lead to some very, very silly sentences.
posted by gompa at 4:19 PM on February 20, 2012 [2 favorites]


curious nu: Needs a "itsthefuturenow" tag.

The future's so bright I need to wear shades at the drive-thru window.
posted by Greg_Ace at 4:20 PM on February 20, 2012


The future needs some soy or garlic or something...
posted by The Whelk at 4:23 PM on February 20, 2012 [2 favorites]


I've seen the future, baby. It is burgers.
posted by gompa at 4:24 PM on February 20, 2012


Make some baby-flavored and watch the people who believe fetuses AND corporations are people's heads asplode.
posted by evilmidnightbomberwhatbombsatmidnight at 4:26 PM on February 20, 2012 [2 favorites]


[obligatory Transmetropolitan "Long Pork" reference]

Can we go to Long Pork? They have toys.
posted by Halloween Jack at 4:26 PM on February 20, 2012


It could make Xenophage from Templar, Az closer to reality. In the book, Xenophage only serves morally reprehensible food, newborn puppies in human breast milk for example, but. Old you serve human meat if it was lab grown? Or kitten? Wolly Mammoth?
posted by The Whelk at 4:29 PM on February 20, 2012


For a moment I had this crazy hippie thought of most of that meat farmland being converted back to whatever it naturally was before it was flattened and filled with livestock. Lots of useful and pretty plants, photosynthesizing away, putting a great big dent in the carbon overload and fancible food-pill-future synthesized meat for people who are convinced that anything without meat is a side dish.

... it was a nice moment. I'm in favor.
posted by cmyk at 4:30 PM on February 20, 2012 [2 favorites]


Can we go to Long Pork? They have toys.

That was in the really heartbreaking issue on orphaned drug-addict child prosititutes. So now I am really sad.
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 4:30 PM on February 20, 2012


Funny that it tastes like Calamari, that is one of the few ocean species that are thriving.
posted by psycho-alchemy at 4:34 PM on February 20, 2012


Wasn't that also around e issue where Spider basically admitted to sexually tormenting his sister and how he lives with the guilt and it fuels his work which made it super duper double sad?
posted by The Whelk at 4:35 PM on February 20, 2012


Ironic that it's happening in Europe, where we've heard such rending of clothes and gnashing of teeth over genetically modified food in recent years. But they're ok with meat grown in a test tube?
posted by crunchland at 4:35 PM on February 20, 2012


jepler, you beat me to it - seriously, if you haven't read Pohl's The Space Merchants', you really should - he was way ahead of the curve in 1953 on a great many things
posted by kokaku at 4:41 PM on February 20, 2012 [2 favorites]


Funny that it tastes like Calamari, that is one of the few ocean species that are thriving.

Actually, it says it looks like calamari.
posted by chimaera at 4:43 PM on February 20, 2012


Yum. Lab condoms.
posted by crunchland at 4:47 PM on February 20, 2012


And calamari don't taste of nuttin' anyway. Don't get me wrong, I love the stuff, but even fresh and quivering, calamari is the blandest of Poseidon's offerings to me.
posted by howfar at 4:48 PM on February 20, 2012


Yes! I've been waiting for vat-meat for years!

(No hamburger, vat-grown or otherwise.)
posted by Faint of Butt at 4:51 PM on February 20, 2012


Ironic that it's happening in Europe, where we've heard such rending of clothes and gnashing of teeth over genetically modified food in recent years. But they're ok with meat grown in a test tube?

Regardless of how valid the fears over GMOs are, how could they possibly be applied to vatgrown meat?
posted by Jehan at 4:52 PM on February 20, 2012


And the common cold still somehow eludes us.

Science.
posted by Fizz at 4:53 PM on February 20, 2012 [1 favorite]


When the octopode overlords awaken Cthulhu and enact their reign of terror bright new future, will they be flattered that we made our meat substitute resemble their flesh, or will they take it as a further act of aggression, like we're murdering them in effigy?

BERLIN - The notorious Cuttlefish Liberation Army has destroyed another meat-growing facility...
posted by cmyk at 4:55 PM on February 20, 2012


Wasn't that also around e issue where Spider basically admitted to sexually tormenting his sister and how he lives with the guilt and it fuels his work which made it super duper double sad?

Quite possibly, but now I'm too sad to actually look it up.
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 5:26 PM on February 20, 2012


It'll probably turn out to be too vatenning.
posted by carping demon at 6:12 PM on February 20, 2012 [1 favorite]


More motivation to become a vegetarian :\
posted by victory_laser at 6:14 PM on February 20, 2012


Fleshlight stock up 135%
posted by Smedleyman at 6:17 PM on February 20, 2012 [2 favorites]


And the common cold still somehow eludes us.

Hundreds of viral types are associated with the common cold. You can't just throw penicillin at it.
posted by Auguris at 6:30 PM on February 20, 2012


the common cold is anything but, it's a broad term that covers hundreds of viral types that mutate like a motherfucker and sit in that sweet spot of making you just sick enough to spread but not so much it keeps you from doing shit. I am not surprised growing vat meat is easier than "curing" an entire genre of virii.
posted by The Whelk at 6:39 PM on February 20, 2012 [3 favorites]


MeatFilter as the dyslexics know it as...
posted by Eekacat at 6:43 PM on February 20, 2012 [1 favorite]


Awesome, another reason for wanting a Labrador. Most amazing dog ever.
posted by I love you more when I eat paint chips at 7:36 PM on February 20, 2012 [3 favorites]


I love you more when I eat paint chips: "Awesome, another reason for wanting a Labrador. Most amazing dog ever."

What?
posted by arcticseal at 7:41 PM on February 20, 2012 [2 favorites]


new marriage custom, instead of feeding each other cake the couple feeds themselves each other.

And the two shall become one flesh?
posted by justsomebodythatyouusedtoknow at 7:42 PM on February 20, 2012


Wooly mammoth burger! The mind boggles.
posted by exphysicist345 at 8:19 PM on February 20, 2012


Basically, it was always going to come to this, as long as the population keeps increasing.
posted by newdaddy at 8:29 PM on February 20, 2012


For example, the scientists boast that they will end famine by creating new, genetically engineered food plants. But this will allow the human population to keep expanding indefinitely, and it is well known that crowding leads to increased stress and aggression.
posted by Shit Parade at 12:12 AM on February 21, 2012


Regardless of how valid the fears over GMOs are, how could they possibly be applied to vatgrown meat? -- They don't trust science enough to tinker with a tomato, yet they'll accept a slab of lab goo?
posted by crunchland at 2:06 AM on February 21, 2012


They are off-white and resemble strips of calamari in appearance. These strips will be mixed with blood and artificially grown fat to produce a hamburger by the autumn.

"The reason we are doing this is not to show a viable product..."

Success!
posted by Splunge at 2:56 AM on February 21, 2012 [1 favorite]


furiousxgeorge: "So it's made with blood and leftover animal material from slaughterhouses. I think this guy has a different definition of vegetarian than I do"


I must have missed the part where he implies this was in any way vegetarian. In fact, he even contrasts it with vegetarian meat substitutes, because it's made of meat.
posted by HFSH at 7:57 AM on February 21, 2012


Phil: Blobby, like Bobby, only with an L.
Lem: Don't name it or you won't want to eat it. Remember Chester the carrot?
Phil: Yeah, I miss him.
posted by Thorzdad at 9:22 AM on February 21, 2012


Professor Post did it in the laboratory with a hamburger.
posted by storybored at 8:50 PM on February 28, 2012


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