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Eat Meat Grown from Embryonic Cells in a Lab?


would you eat this? it's been stopped for now due to politics but most beleive it will start up again soon.

MUSC growing meat in lab
By Renee Dudley
Monday, February 7, 2011
Would you eat meat grown from embryonic cells in a lab?

Researchers at the Medical University of South Carolina hope so.

Scientists there have spent the past several years learning to grow "in vitro" or "cultured" meat. In other words, they grow the food without the rest of the animal.

Beginning in December, the team got a boost from People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, which funded a project to eventually make the meat available for public consumption.

Here's how it works:

Scientists take a biopsy from an animal. They extract stem cells and add "growth serum" to multiply them. The compound binds together to form muscle and receives electric shocks to boost protein content. It's then ground, flavored and spiked with vitamins and other nutrients. The first samples from MUSC will look like "meat bars," researchers said.

In the coming months, Dr. Vladimir Mironov, from the Department of Regenerative Medicine and Cell Biology, will oversee the first clinical trial of "Charlem," short for "Charleston- engineered meat" at MUSC. He declined to release details of the trial.

The first public taste-test will happen in Sweden in August, but it could be up to a decade before the product is available for general consumption in the U.S., said Nicholas J. Genovese, a visiting scholar working on behalf of PETA.

But Mironov and Genovese think they could find a market for the first-generation product -- expected to be very costly -- among the very wealthy. They plan to tailor the meat according to people's preferences, making available different levels of fat content and flavoring.

Reader poll
Would you eat meat grown from stem cells in a lab?
Yes 38% 123 votes
No 61% 198 votes
321 total votes.


Dr. Vladimir Mironov will oversee the first clinical trial of engineered meat at MUSC.

They've applied for incorporation to start the very first "carnery" (think: bakery, brewery) where meat would be produced. Mironov, who said repeatedly he aspires to be the "Google of agriculture," said venture capitalists are beginning to line up. He declined to say how much funding has been secured for the project.

The implication for global food production could be huge, Mironov said, possibly able to address food shortages and the dwindling land available for raising cattle and crops to feed animals.

By 2050, world meat production must double to keep up with demand, Genovese said. Cultured meat could be a way to ramp up supply.

PETA spokesman Bruce Friedrich said his organization gave Mironov a small grant to study the idea about a decade ago. PETA, a group more commonly associated with boycotting lab research, has tracked progress on cultured meat since then. About 98 percent of animals that die annually in the U.S. are killed for the meat industry, Friedrich said.

But at a time when people are gravitating toward the local and organic food movement, the scientists must overcome what they call the "yuck" factor of food produced in a lab. They don't seem to be concerned.

"People are already eating genetically-modified food," Mironov said, pointing specifically to corn and the recent litigation claiming Taco Bell's meat filling isn't beef. "People eat artificial flavors every day. ...I don't think it will be difficult to convince people to try it."

Friedrich agreed: "When you look at the difference between eating an animal's rotting corpse and eating something grown in a test tube, it shouldn't be a tough sell," he said.


I'd eat it. I'd probably want it ground first, but then I'd eat it. And this could help keep prices on real meat down as well.


I didn't read it all but yeah, sounds weird to eat a piece of meat that's grown just like that.

I'd try it...but I imagine I wouldn't buy it regularly.


You assume that making meat in a lab is cheaper than raising livestock.


In all honest, I doubt the companies would label it as such. Take for example the case of genetically modified foods. The companies have fought having to label that the food contains GMOs.


yummy, spiked with "growth serum". It would be interesting to know the chemical and nutrient differences between naturally grown and lab produced product.
I just finished reading Oryx & Crake, this sounds to close to pigoons and chicken noobs for me.


Maybe if they have it tested and refined over the course of many decades.


Interesting oxymoron PETA has going on there.

If I get the gist of most common arguments, it is unethical and unhealthy to eat meat that is grown in a stockade because of the cruelty the animal experiences and all of the chemicals that are used to grow it are bad for you....

BUT it is good and even revolutionary to have a cow act as a sample bank for biopsy then eat a chemically synthesized analog of the cows tissue.

So the cows will be poked, prodded, and samples taken from them for much longer than the average 3 years that a food cow lives, and the chemicals (which are so bad for you now) used to grow the tissues are not addressed in any way, because PETA is funding its development.

What next? Healthy Cigarettes?


It'll probably give you cancer, people need to understand the fact that animals need to be eaten.


They should make this stuff from Futurama. I'd eat it twice a day and then have a sensible din dins!


I may try. But knowing this is possibly in our future makes me even more happy to have the ability to kill and eat my own cattle, deer, and migratory bird. But like theuofh said, it probably wont cut down on price of meat. I doubt the process is cheap and probably doesnt produce a large enough quantity.


No I don't.


Only a matter of time.


From your title it sounds like they are growing meat from a baby "Embryonic [stem] Cells" and no I would not eat human flesh. Now if you're saying that they are taking animal stem cells, that may be different but still strange and I don't know.


The article says that it is already ground and comes at a high cost -- for the wealthy.


we can make vegans and vegetarians eat the crap at high price and we can eat normal meat, the V&V's are used to only eating like 10g protein a day anyway so in small quantaties im sure it would be "affordable" to them


I'd eat it once for the novelty of it, then never touch it again. It will always be inferior to the real thing. Scientists should tell PETA to screw off and work on making animals will more muscle mass.


I am pretty sure that in a few decades this will be dirt cheap and slaughtering a living being to eat it will seem eccentric, if not barbaric.


If they can grow me a prime grade steak with the texture of Japanese Wagyu and the flavor of Black Angus, at the price of a regular cut of select grade, I'll buy all of it.

Where do I get "growth serum?"


Nah. Nothing beats game meats or grass fed beef.