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Thread: In vitro meat beef-burger plans

  1. #1
    JaneSky's Avatar
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    Default In vitro meat beef-burger plans

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/environmen...er-meat-eating


    I can't say I like it, the process, the fact that it's in the name of 'productivity' not welfare, and the fact that I think meat is 'icky' anyway... But, "mass production in 10-20 years" could lead to an eventual reduction (or even elimination!) of the number of animals reared for meat, without having to 'convert' peoples tastes and diet... If they could use the previous batch of cells to create the next set rather than needing adult stem cells (I don't know enough to know if that might be possible), then at some point in the future those who aren't interested in giving up meat would be able to eat 'animal free', which would be a good thing.

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    Default Re: In vitro meat beef-burger plans.

    I think it's a good thing, there are many people who are never going to give up meat and this could be the answer. I imagine many people will be put off by the idea that it isn't 'natural'. I'd never want to eat meat but it would be good for feeding my cats.

  3. #3
    thegreenjudy's Avatar
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    Default Re: In vitro meat beef-burger plans

    Well, it is natural - it's made of exactly the same matter - Just raised in a lab. It's the same process. It's like growing plants in a lab rather than the garden. You wouldn't say the plants are not natural.

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    Draíochta Blueberries's Avatar
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    Quote Mymblesdaughter
    I'd never want to eat meat but it would be good for feeding my cats.
    That's a good point that I never thought of, using in-vitro meat to feed carnivorous companion animals. I know that there is vegan cat food but I've heard mixed opinions about it (I don't have cats so I don't know), but in-vitro meat would be an alternative for cats that can't/won't eat vegan food.
    Houmous atá ann!

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    Ch's Avatar
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    Default Re: In vitro meat beef-burger plans

    It's a nice enough thought, I guess - but I just can't get behind it.
    Seems like an awful lot of money to throw at something rather than just opening up to the idea that plants really can be the basis of your diet and that you don't need meat to survive.
    Imagine what you could buy with all the money they're spending on that :/

  6. #6
    Abe Froman Risker's Avatar
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    Default Re: In vitro meat beef-burger plans

    It's a good concept IMHO and though not the ideal we may all hope for I think it's only sensible to try and tackle the issue from multiple angles.

    In the scheme of things it's really not that much money.

  7. #7

    Default Re: In vitro meat beef-burger plans

    While I applaud these people for trying to find a solution to a terrible problem, I am somewhat disturbed by the technique. I just cant pinpoint what disturbs me so much. I wonder however, how they will get those stem cells. They mention taking them from the animals by injection. Will some of these farm animals have to be kept around on farms in order to take the stem cells from them? Isnt this in a way still using the animals for our own benefit, not theirs? It would be like capturing a wolf in the wild, taking a little of its blood, then letting it go. I also don't see how this will win people over any more than a vegan lifestyle. How many peole will go for eating meat grown in a lab when most of us who care at all are already disturbed by genetically modified foods? Then there is still the issue of all of the other things animals are used for...leather, toiletries and cleaning supplies, glues, wool, etc. Sorry to be negative I just think this needs to be explore more intensively before becoming a reality.

  8. #8

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    Default Re: In vitro meat beef-burger plans

    I do not see anything good about this nor would i want to fed it to companion animals. It is a case of man playing God again it will give the meat eaters the excuse they are looking for to cling to an unethical, unhealthy, cruel diet. I also worry that some vegans may go back to meat if it appears to be a cruelty free product. As for the i only eat free range people well it wil be an answer to their prayers!

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    Default Re: In vitro meat beef-burger plans

    I think the people who are against GMOs wouldn't eat this, so it's not going to prevent that much animal suffering. There's also the snobbish attitude to contend with (hah - "I wouldn't eat that fake stuff to save my life!").

    As well, I think people always believe advances in technology must be a good thing, despite the evidence.

    My natural cynicism says this is a money maker. There is no compassion or any similar emotion in it - though these will heavily feature in its advertising.

    From a pure vegan point of view, fake (or real!) meat is simply unnecessary.
    "The trouble with quotes on the internet is that you can never tell if they're genuine" - Abraham Lincoln

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    Default Re: In vitro meat beef-burger plans

    Quote watervoilet View Post
    I do not see anything good about this nor would i want to fed it to companion animals. It is a case of man playing God again it will give the meat eaters the excuse they are looking for to cling to an unethical, unhealthy, cruel diet. I also worry that some vegans may go back to meat if it appears to be a cruelty free product. As for the i only eat free range people well it wil be an answer to their prayers!
    What's not good about it, the amount of animals reared for meat could theoretically be reduced to a millionth of what it is now according to that. And as far as playing god goes, ignoring the fact that there's nothing wrong with that, people said that about flying and a myriad of other things we now consider normal.

    And as for going back to meat, assuming you could use the grown meat to grow meat like JaneSky suggested (there's a few methods of growing meat like this being researched, and a few do allow that apparently), whats wrong with that too? Once it becomes independant of animals it's no different to a lab grown vegetable. So long as they still avoid milk, leather and all the like, we could squabble over whether it counts as vegan or not all we like, but the ideal and end result are all still there. Say it happens and I eat the meat but you don't, what are you doing for animals that I'm not? It sounds like you're forgetting the whole point of veganism because you think it sounds creepy.

    Maybe it's just me, but this entering mass production as far as I'm concerned is probably one of, if not the best thing that's ever happened as far as veg*nism is concerned. It's got the potential to be the largest reduction in animals reared for meat we've ever seen.

    Oh and to DavidT, yeah it is just to make money, otherwise they wouldn't be killing the animals they need to do the research, but does it really matter what their motive is if it does what we want? If someone cleaned my house because they had a machine to turn dust in to money I wouldn't complain!
    Them as can do, has to do for them as can't. And someone has to speak up for them as has no voices - Granny Aching

  11. #11
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    Default Re: In vitro meat beef-burger plans

    Quote AaronM View Post
    Maybe it's just me, but this entering mass production as far as I'm concerned is probably one of, if not the best thing that's ever happened as far as veg*nism is concerned. It's got the potential to be the largest reduction in animals reared for meat we've ever seen.
    I have to agree. If technological advance can help vastly reduce the exploitation of animals, i am 100% for it. In fact i would be jumping for joy and buying the products to support it. Basically i see it as a loophole for people who would like to help animals without doing anything (it is sad that they will never care about animals enough to make a personal change, but thats unfortunately what many people are like). Also if it could be cheaper it would catch on quickly and if it tasted good im sure it could be incorporated into the economic system like fast food and stuff.

    One issue I see, I have heard arguments from the "meat eating is healthy" crowd, that there are some unknown trace nutrients in meat that aren't in plants or cant be made by humans. I am not sure where i stand on this issue. I mean honestly there is NOTHING i know of that is impossible to get from plant sources (B12 deficiency is likely a product of a super clean society and all, i have heard creatine but our body makes it, ive heard choline but thats in most plant food so if you get enough calories you will get it.. the list goes on and on). Now I wont say that is impossible for this to be true. However, there are enough life long and 30+ year vegans who thrive, so I have my doubts that there is some "essential" nutrient in meat that we have yet discovered, (otherwise vegans would show signs of deficiency).

    I see this problem only as an argument by many people. Something along the lines of "well the meat wasn't actually nourished by blood etc, so some nutrient in the blood could be missing when the meat cells are replicated not grown in a live animal". It is an unfortunate possibility in my eyes. This said, I can't imagine a vast majority thinking along these lines. Maybe just a bit of pessimism there.

    Does anyone know the nutritional composition of the lab meat? I am sure they are planning to enrich it with certain things like creatine, Vit A, B12, and try to make it as perfect of a copy (hell they could make it BETTER, after all meat is not all that nutrient dense, and it could be fortified like any other food).

  12. #12

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    Default Re: In vitro meat beef-burger plans

    It's an interesting subject alright, with lots of vegans coming down on the side of GE meat. I'm against GE full stop, so where does this leave me? I'll have people arguing that I'm increasing suffering of creatures because of my stance.

    A couple of worries: firstly, it somehow legitimises meat eating whilst at the same time exposing the 'guilt' factor in meat eating. Secondly, it will have to be cheap, because it's in direct competition with cheap 'real' meat. This probably means an even further lowering of welfare standards for animals reared for eating, as if those standards weren't already low enough. This is capitalism at work, the drive to the lowest common denominator.
    "The trouble with quotes on the internet is that you can never tell if they're genuine" - Abraham Lincoln

  13. #13
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    Default Re: In vitro meat beef-burger plans

    Fortunately, if it did successfully compete with "real" meat, that would mean the industry would have to be large enough (or be growing fast enough) to be able to dramatically lessen the raw numbers of animals in the "real" meat industry. So that is one upside. Though im not sure where I stand on whether its better to have half as many animals treated worse or the status quo.

    I think i am more for the former simply because if a "lab" meat took half the market its possible that people will be more interested in animal welfare in general. The reason i say this is because there is no longer a defensiveness in the people who eat cultured meat mostly, therefore they can discuss the animal welfare issues rationally without and guilt, shame etc (I do think there are plenty of people who would otherwise care for animal rights if not for their addiction to meat). So even if say, there was 50% of the market using farmed meat and 50% of the market in cultured meat and they were in relatively even competition, then first off, there are that many less animals suffering daily, and secondly, there is a large chunk of consumers who will not be as closed to the idea of helping farmed animals (consuming them is no longer a mainstay in their lives). Many ex-vegans, ex-vegetarians, vegetarian inclined, and generally animal rights inclined people would be much more supportive of animal rights and welfare as cultured meat consumption no longer makes them hypocrites.

    So if the industry was big enough to compete with farmed meat, it could actually mean BETTER welfare for animals etc. That competition could decrease welfare standards is definitely a concern. I can't answer it with absolute certainty. I am not sure how much money could even be saved by animal agriculture industries by further reduction of welfare, its possible that it wouldn't be substantial (feeding and watering are the most costly and they are pretty standard price wise, i dont think welfare measures "cost" the meat industry all that much money) or at least not substantial enough to compete. Though im no expert and cant say about prices of cultured meat.

    Of course all of this is pure conjecture because none of us really know the implications, I say its worth a try.

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    Default Re: In vitro meat beef-burger plans

    There will be bumps in the road for this. They can choose to sell it as it is, not from animals or they can mix it in with real meat to test it on the market. I personally think the latter will come definitely, and long before the former.

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    Default Re: In vitro meat beef-burger plans

    Latest news on this story - one of the developers is a long-term vegan (his fake meat will be based on plants, not animal tissue culture:
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/20...ch?INTCMP=SRCH
    once in a while you can get shown the light
    in the strangest of places if you look at it right

  16. #16

    Default Re: In vitro meat beef-burger plans

    As the Guardian story says, the cultures are currently grown in, among other things, foetal bovine serum (like a great many cells cultures). But if they can get around that then more power to them, I guess.

    Instinctively, I want this product to ultimately be 'not vegan' for some reason (probably some weird neurosis on my part) - but if it leads to health/animal cruelty warnings on packs of 'real' meat then that'll be a real accomplishment. If people become more used to the idea of not eating products they consider cruel, then hopefully their attitude towards other animal products like leather or glue will change too (a lot of people who don't currently eat veal are also not crazy about calves' leather). And, as has already been said, it will hopefully provide a way to feed carnivorous animals.
    "Eventually, I realised that the reason I was so angry was because I want people in the world to be well." - Ian MacKaye

  17. #17
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    Default Re: In vitro meat beef-burger plans

    I think they want to use some sort of mushroom protein serum. Something crazy like that, which cuts out the need for the fetal bovine serum. Thanks for the link.

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    Default Re: In vitro meat beef-burger plans

    Hard not to have mixed feelings about this lol.
    I wouldn't eat it, but I would certainly encourage my omni friends/family to switch to it.

  19. #19
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    Default Re: In vitro meat beef-burger plans

    I think it's a great idea if it reduces animal suffering.

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    Default Re: In vitro meat beef-burger plans

    An interesting new development:

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-20972018
    "Eventually, I realised that the reason I was so angry was because I want people in the world to be well." - Ian MacKaye

  21. #21
    Pea-utiful... Peabrain's Avatar
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    Default Re: In vitro meat beef-burger plans

    Personally, I'd find this kind of meat too icky to contemplate actually eating. I will always associate meat with an animal's death and even if it isn't, I'd find it hard divorcing the two in my mind. The minute I "woke up" and became vegan (yes, it was that instantaneous; a sort of inner "revolt" once I found out what i now know), meat became just disgusting to my mind. Such a strong reaction I know, but I'd bet I'm not the only one who, faced with a cruelty free version of meat, would still not want it anymore...

    However, if it leads to an end to animals being bred for meat or at the very least a huge decline or as someone mentioned; a "health/welfare warning" I'm in full support of it. As long of course as it doesn't somehow leads to human gene mutations or hormone growth issues (you never know).
    Last edited by Peabrain; Jan 22nd, 2013 at 01:33 PM.
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  22. #22
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    Default Re: In vitro meat beef-burger plans

    Why cant they stop buggering about with food and just eat what nature intended, why do they have to make it rocket science??
    "when the power of love overcomes the love of power the world will know peace" Jimi Hendrix

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    Abe Froman Risker's Avatar
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    Default Re: In vitro meat beef-burger plans

    ^ Why not? I don't think nature has any intentions by the way, people are products of nature so people doing this is natural.
    "I don't want to live on this planet any more" - Professor Hubert J. Farnsworth

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    Default Re: In vitro meat beef-burger plans

    because people who muck about with food usually have profit at the forefront of their minds rather than feeding the people, Monsanto for example.
    "when the power of love overcomes the love of power the world will know peace" Jimi Hendrix

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    Abe Froman Risker's Avatar
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    Default Re: In vitro meat beef-burger plans

    I don't see what's wrong with that.
    "I don't want to live on this planet any more" - Professor Hubert J. Farnsworth

  26. #26
    tickled onion's Avatar
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    Default Re: In vitro meat beef-burger plans

    profit is fine, we all need some of it, but what worries me is science creating a few vast companies that have the potential to have a monopoly over food, like monsanto, and the influence they have on governments with their vast profits from such ventures.
    "when the power of love overcomes the love of power the world will know peace" Jimi Hendrix

  27. #27
    Bad Buddhist Clueless Git's Avatar
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    Default Re: In vitro meat beef-burger plans

    I think that the "The only worth in my life is that I can treat other lives as worthless" factor is missing from in-vitro meat.

    Seriously, I really don't think that meat eater mentality will ever fully accept meat that comes at anything less than the price of an actual life.
    All done in the best possible taste ...

  28. #28
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    Default Re: In vitro meat beef-burger plans

    Quote Cupid Stunt View Post
    I think that the "The only worth in my life is that I can treat other lives as worthless" factor is missing from in-vitro meat.

    Seriously, I really don't think that meat eater mentality will ever fully accept meat that comes at anything less than the price of an actual life.
    or they would be eating quorn, soya chunks, seitan and TVP already
    "when the power of love overcomes the love of power the world will know peace" Jimi Hendrix

  29. #29
    Pea-utiful... Peabrain's Avatar
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    Default Re: In vitro meat beef-burger plans

    Well, quorn is disgusting, and soya/seitan etc don't truly taste like meat (not that they're not nice just on their own merits). I think only meat truly tastes like meat... So the flavour factor isn't a complete moot point, BUT I have to say, I kind agree, it'll probably not be "good enough" for some meat eaters.
    "For in this life not one is pure, but to learn and grow is my destiny, I'm sure."

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