Artificial meat may be a futuristic invention of scientific man, yet the future is not far off. In fact it is already here. After a lot of laboratory testing, the world’s first in vitro burger may not lie in the realm of science fiction anymore.
Dr. Mark Post is engineering the world's first in-vitro burger of worth $325,000. With meat getting more and more costly by the second the world’s middle class faces dire shortages in the future as regards the contents of their daily dietary requirements. According to the New York Times, leaving aside the vegetarians and vegans, most of the people of the world do enjoy the taste of meat. Meat is a very satiating and appetizing food that makes life worth living. Yet the process through which it reaches your kitchen table has its loopholes. There is the obvious slaughter and cruelty to animals that is an inescapable factor in the equation. Then there is the fact that you need a lot of land and resources to keep and nourish any livestock from beef cattle to sheep. With the demand exceeding the supply the middle class such as in China is clamoring for more protein.
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But the solution is already in the pipeline. It involves lab work that is taking place at a strenuous rate. The scientists plan to soon have a burger patty made of artificial meat that has been grown in a test tube. The only problem is it will cost at least $325,000 which for now makes the whole experiment very unfeasible. It’s not that faux meat can’t be made. It can. But the astronomical amounts of cash involved in its creation make it a fool’s errand. Yet the world thrives on hope. The scientists haven’t exactly given up. They are at it and soon methods will be discovered which will make the technique much cheaper than it is at present.
The basic method is to develop a culture of beef cells taken from the neck muscles of cattle that have been slaughtered. It is very complicated and ultimately tissue engineering develops a semi-solid substance possessing a meat-like texture in a lab container. The inventor, who started it all, named Dr Post, has even tasted some of the lab-prepared meat and says it is delicious. He plans to some day have a complete slab of beef that will be cooked to make the world’s first artificial burger. This will solve the food problems of the world and end cruelty to animals too. A lofty set of goals indeed.