Dutch scientist Mark Post told a major science conference on Sunday that we are only months away from the world’s first completely un-natural hamburger. He and his colleagues have put together a way to make “Test Tube” meat out of bovine stem cells.
Post is interested in creating fake muscular tissue in order to create the first meat substitute that is actually a meat product but does not have to be farmed or harvested. The ingredients to make the test tube burger still exist only in the lab,
Post said that by fall,
“we have committed ourselves to make a couple of thousand of small tissues, and then assemble them into a hamburger.”
Post and his colleagues want to reduce the environmental impact of farming by creating these meat products. They said that conventional meat and dairy products require more land, water, plant matter and waste disposal than all other human foods combined.
The global demand for meat is expected to rise by 60 percent by 2050, said American scientist Nicholas Genovese, who organized the symposium.
The demand for beef is expected to grow by 60% over the next 40 years but according to Genovese,
“But the majority of earth’s pasture lands are already in use, so conventional livestock producers can only meet the booming demand by further expansion into nature.”
The result would be lost biodiversity, more greenhouse and other gases, and an increase in disease, he said.
No companies have expressed an interest in funding Post’s project. They are currently funding their research with a 250,000 Euro grant given to them by an anonymous donor interesting in groundbreaking agricultural technologies.
Would you eat Test Tube Meat?