meat in the lab

Mungo

Well-Known Member
Some food for thought for the more philosophically inclined...

You may have noticed in the news the successful production of a burger in the lab, with no involvment from a living animal.

This morning, I ended up in a conversation with people in my department about this. All were meat eaters, yet about half said that if the technology were to become cheap and common, they would completely stop eating meat that had been killed. They asked me why I would continue killing animals if I didn't have too.

This worried me, and set me thinking: is there ever likely to come a time when it becomes socially unacceptable to kill animals for food, given that an alternative source of 'meat' exists? I can, reluctantly, envisage a future where this happens.

Rather than reacting with blind hostility and going on a rant about antis and vegetarians, the disconnect between urban and rural values, and the tragedy of the Nanny state, I think it would be worth us thinking very carefully about the lines of argument we should present in favour of killing animals for food when an alternative exists.

I suspect this issue will slowly grow over years, if not decades, and I think that a parrallel could be drawn with smoking. I am not a smoker, and personally hate it, but feel very uncomfortable with the extent to which personal choice has been steadily removed. Yet it would have been very hard to predict the way things have developed, from a 1950s perspective.
 

Buckbones

Well-Known Member
Well at £250,000 to produce a quarter/half a pound it is not going to be in ASDA any time soon.

So in years to come we can go to the supermarket and order any type of meat and pick it up in a week or two.
Or take some sells to a lab and we could have any variety, could even see what the ex wife tasted like on a BBQ witout going to prison. Cool!

​Andrew
 

teabag_46

Well-Known Member
BBC News - What does a stem cell burger taste like?

The link to the bbc twitter report.

I love the quote "vegetarians should remain vegetarians!"

Stem cell research seems to have come a long way since its first inception. I don't believe that I am comfortable with stem cell research being used to 'grow' food, although if it could be managed in large enough quantities at a reasonable price, it maight go some way towards alleviating hunger in the world, which with a burgeoning population is likely to become a real issue.

I believe however, that stem cell research would be better used for its original purpose(s) ie the growth of replacement organs/limbs, or as a (possible) cure for cancer, using shark stem cells.
 

rick6point5

Well-Known Member
WOW....I can't eat a Mc......'s with out thinking about 'super size me' and his almost fois gras'd liver and kidneys..... Stem cell burger, plus all the required growth hormones, antibiotics and anti rejections drugs required....i think i will pass thanks.
Not sure that those near 50% who agreed they may eat it should the tech become cheap & common enough have actually thought about it in its entirety Mungo.
Can i ask as to you response to 'will you still kill animals if you did not need to'?

atb rick
 

JTO

Well-Known Member
You can't get out more than you put in. Meat substitutes have been around for a long time, mainly using Soya. Something that is finite, will have to be used to be able to manufacture this stuff. Nobody has found perpetual motion yet.
 

perdix

Well-Known Member
With all the fuss created when GM crops are mentioned I wonder if there will be any major opposition to this?
 

Claret_Dabbler

Well-Known Member
Conventional Industrially produced meat is bad enough without entertaining eating this s#1t.

This is not about real world issues. This is about self indulgent, rich, metrosexual westerners pandering to those of similar bent. Apparently cattle produce more co2 than cars, blah, blah, blah. How many tens of millions more grass eating, gas farting animals used to roam the planet in millennia's past?

Think what good could have been done with the cash wasted on this. Vaccines for tens of thousands of poor kids in some sub Saharan dump for eg.

Shower of hypocrites.
 

CWMMAN3738

Well-Known Member
Not meaning to rant but I wouldn't touch it with a barge pole I want real meat from natures larder knowing where it comes from etc not some fermented muck from a lab or growth factory I never will even if I have to eat rats.
 

stalker.308

Well-Known Member
Why change the habit of a lifetime. We have been eating meat, from animals, for many years!

My philosophy is simple: How can you tell if a fish is fresh? Because you have killed it yourself!

​I trust the meat I put on my plate!
 

private fraser

Well-Known Member
Time and perspective have a habit of making once normal and everyday practices seem bizarre.
By that I mean there may be a time, in the (hopefully) far future, that people are disgusted by the thought of killing and eating animals, we'd be like cavemen to them.
Eating food stuffs grown in a lab would be considered the obviously civilised way.
Having seen the inside of some food processing plants, especially the ones that produce mrm (machine recovered meat), there are certainly some foods that I wouldn't touch.

Remember the film "Soylent Green" ?

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0070723/plotsummary
 

johndeere

Well-Known Member
Interesting post, not killing animals to eat because we don’t have to.
Once the politicians realise that there could be votes in making killing animals illegal because there is a alternative then it may become a reality certainly not for a few decades yet i hope.
Deer management will probably go down the route of birth control with drugs surgery and all shooting will be done with tranquilisers.
As soon as someone invents a contraceptive for wild life that can be administered on food or by spay the country side as we know it will cease to exist.
Me personally i would not touch the lab produced rubbish.
somewhere in my genetic make there is a cave man trying to get out kill it cook it eat i am in touch with the cave man in me.
 

Mungo

Well-Known Member
This is not about real world issues. This is about self indulgent, rich, metrosexual westerners pandering to those of similar bent. Apparently cattle produce more co2 than cars, blah, blah, blah. How many tens of millions more grass eating, gas farting animals used to roam the planet in millennia's past?

Think what good could have been done with the cash wasted on this. Vaccines for tens of thousands of poor kids in some sub Saharan dump for eg.

I think it might be a mistake to write this off quite so vehemently. Yes, it may not *currently* be a 'real world' issue, and yes, the priorities are rather skewed with regard to sensible application. However, the technology now exists, and will continue to develop, probably quite rapidly. There is also an undeniable cultural trend toward discomfort with killing animals, for whatever purpose. As more of the population become urbanised, that trend will continue - there's nothing you can do about that, short of altering public perception on a very large scale.

Put the two together, and a future where all killing of animals becomes unacceptable or even illegal is actually quite likely. Add the trend toward increasing public suspicion of or hostility to firearms, and unless we think very carefully and act strategically as early and as forcefully as possible, the future of field sports numbers in the decades.

I will go so far as to make a prediction: within 50 years (probably just within my lifetime), (i) it will be illegal to kill any animal except for humane despatch; and (ii) there will be no firearms in private ownership.

Unless we are quick, clever and united in finding ways to educate people and convince them otherwise.
 
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