Pleased to Meat You - Would You Eat Synthesized Meat Product?

Cleverboy

macrumors 65816
Original poster
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-1215883/Controversial-cooker-grows-meat-kitchen-wins-major-design-competition.html?ITO=1490
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FkioqNv3PgY&feature=player_embedded
Meat "ethics" are about to get even more complicated.

For electronics manufacturer Electrolux's recent design competition, first place went to a device that creates meat and fish by heating animal cells and growing them into edible food.

While still in the design phase, the Cocoon would theoretically replicate real meat by synthesizing the compounds that make it up. The controversial product would heat food packets containing muscle cells, oxygen and nutrients. "This will create 100% pure meat without the need for animals to be killed and with no risk of contamination," said Cocoon creator Rickard Hederstierna, a 27 year-old Swedish design student. "It will change everything."

Runners up in the competition included a steamer that would clean and iron an article of clothing in a mere two seconds, a fridge that teleports food directly to the kitchen, and a flying rain-catcher that is aware of how thirsty you are. The stuff of science fiction, yes -- but undeniably also the stuff of science fact within our lifetimes.
http://www.switched.com/2009/09/26/device-that-grows-meat-in-your-kitchen-wins-design-prize/

~ CB
 

7031

macrumors 6502
Apr 6, 2007
479
0
England
This does sound like a pretty good idea in my opinion, and I think it would be great if such a thing did take off, but would this mean that all meat would essentially be a clone of the next piece? That is, no variation?

I am a vegetarian, and to be honest I probably still wouldn't eat this, but I would like to see this take off, and if I was not a vegetarian, I probably would eat this anyway, since one would assume that this is pretty much exactly the same as any other meat, without the killing part.
 

GoCubsGo

macrumors Nehalem
Feb 19, 2005
35,743
141
I this went mainstream then McDonalds would save a ton of money having this! :p But really, if this became 'the way' then I suspect I would become a vegitarian. I couldn't see benefits of eating meat like this and I think certain nutrients are impossible to clone, or would be rather.
 

.Andy

macrumors 68030
Jul 18, 2004
2,946
583
The Mergui Archipelago
I'd probably give eating synthetic meat some consideration. I'm vegetarian for reasons of animal exploitation and suffering and environmental benefit so this could be fine. One thing that would give me pause would be if it was highly resource dependent. For instance in vitro tissue culture uses lots of power for incubators and water and nutrients so it might be a rather wasteful approach.
 

Desertrat

macrumors newbie
Jul 4, 2003
2
706
Terlingua, Texas
As long as this "lab meat" was a known item, and a choice among many, I don't see a problem for me. In one sense, "Meat's meat." But I like variety in the flavor of the meats I eat. I like venison, which is different from elk, which is different from cow--and there's variety among cows. I like pork roast as well as sausage and bacon. Same for chickens, quail, doves and turkeys.

Hey, salami and swiss on rye with Fritos and a Shiner Bock? Some basic food groups, right there.

From the movie "Auntie Mame": "Life is a banquet. I won't settle for a cold lettuce sandwich."

Technical question: How ya gonna give it some exercise, so it doesn't come out with a mush-like consistency? Meat-flavored custard doesn't sound like anything worthwhile.

'Rat
 

rhsgolfer33

macrumors 6502a
Jan 6, 2006
882
1
Wouldn't touch it. I'd probably just go out and kill my own game and freeze it if this became the standard.
 

Chaszmyr

macrumors 601
Aug 9, 2002
4,265
76
Until such a product is actually available, I expect almost everyone to have a negative reaction. It just sounds disgusting, but if someone could be persuaded to try it once, they might change their mind if it actually produces good quality meat.
 

MBHockey

macrumors 68040
Oct 4, 2003
3,927
161
New York
I suppose you guys wouldn't eat genetically modified (read: synthesized) corn products or their derivatives either? Oh wait, you already do for almost every meal of every day.
 

Pocket lint

macrumors regular
Sep 2, 2009
112
0
In my trousers
Until such a product is actually available, I expect almost everyone to have a negative reaction. It just sounds disgusting, but if someone could be persuaded to try it once, they might change their mind if it actually produces good quality meat.
Keep in mind, though, that meat is muscle. And an artificially grown muscle won't have been used much by the - non-existant - animal.

I also can't help but think of petridish-grown cancer tumors, to be honest.

I suppose you guys wouldn't eat synthesized corn products or their derivatives either? Oh wait, you already it almost every meal of every day.
There's a difference between processed (and even genetically modified) corn products and petridish grown - "artificially" grown - corn.

And even if corn were artificially grown as the meat, it _still_ wouldn't be the same thing.

Btw, I don't eat petridish corn at every meal, and I highly doubt you do. Even if you do eat GM products.
 

Chaszmyr

macrumors 601
Aug 9, 2002
4,265
76
Keep in mind, though, that meat is muscle. And an artificially grown muscle won't have been used much by the - non-existant - animal.
That's true, but not necessarily an argument against synthesized meat. Animals that don't use their muscles much tend to have better, more tender meat.
 

Pocket lint

macrumors regular
Sep 2, 2009
112
0
In my trousers
That's true, but not necessarily an argument against synthesized meat. Animals that don't use their muscles much tend to have better, more tender meat.
They still use their muscles, otherwise there wouldn't be any meat. But I do get your point, though.

Perhaps they could electrify the meat and in that way "exercise" the bowl of flesh (yuk).
That would take care of that, although not take care of the picture of cancer tumors very vividly displayed before my inner eye.
 

BoyBach

macrumors 68040
Feb 24, 2006
3,030
2
UK
Are they going to be able to grow brisket, shin, neck, rump, sirloin, etc? Are they going to grow it so that it has the beautiful marbling of fat that makes the good cuts 'good'? Will they be able to grow it so that the meat tastes of the food that the animal ate whilst it was alive?

Or are we heading towards a horrible dystopian future where food ("meat", "vegetable", etc.) is solely about nutrients? If so, kill me now!
 

NT1440

macrumors G5
May 18, 2008
12,141
13,988
No, I'm gravely worried about what we eat and the rapidly declining amount of biodiversity in our interactions with the planet.
 

Zombie Acorn

macrumors 65816
Feb 2, 2009
1,301
9,062
Toronto, Ontario
Are they going to be able to grow brisket, shin, neck, rump, sirloin, etc? Are they going to grow it so that it has the beautiful marbling of fat that makes the good cuts 'good'? Will they be able to grow it so that the meat tastes of the food that the animal ate whilst it was alive?

Or are we heading towards a horrible dystopian future where food ("meat", "vegetable", etc.) is solely about nutrients? If so, kill me now!
Get your soylant green here!
 

yg17

macrumors G5
Aug 1, 2004
14,888
2,480
St. Louis, MO
Are they going to be able to grow brisket, shin, neck, rump, sirloin, etc? Are they going to grow it so that it has the beautiful marbling of fat that makes the good cuts 'good'? Will they be able to grow it so that the meat tastes of the food that the animal ate whilst it was alive?

Or are we heading towards a horrible dystopian future where food ("meat", "vegetable", etc.) is solely about nutrients? If so, kill me now!
As long as I can get my prime rib tender and so rare that it's still mooing, I don't care if it was grown :D
 

hulugu

macrumors 68000
Aug 13, 2003
1,819
10,235
quae tangit perit Trump
No, I'm gravely worried about what we eat and the rapidly declining amount of biodiversity in our interactions with the planet.
This is an interesting point, although I'd tend to think that such a production might actually remove the pressure on many of our current food-stuffs. There would be less interest in cheap corn, for example, and thus maybe farming could be redirected towards growing a wider variety of plants for direct human consumption rather than feeding it to the cows to make beef.
 

NT1440

macrumors G5
May 18, 2008
12,141
13,988
This is an interesting point, although I'd tend to think that such a production might actually remove the pressure on many of our current food-stuffs. There would be less interest in cheap corn, for example, and thus maybe farming could be redirected towards growing a wider variety of plants for direct human consumption rather than feeding it to the cows to make beef.
I'd HIGHLY suggest reading a book called "the sacred balance" by David Sazuki. It gave me a good eye opener to how interconnected we are and how many of the practices that help people in the short term are setting us up for a major disaster long term. GREAT book, even if its just to get a different perspective on our role in the ecosystem.
 

.Andy

macrumors 68030
Jul 18, 2004
2,946
583
The Mergui Archipelago
I'd HIGHLY suggest reading a book called "the sacred balance" by David Sazuki. It gave me a good eye opener to how interconnected we are and how many of the practices that help people in the short term are setting us up for a major disaster long term. GREAT book, even if its just to get a different perspective on our role in the ecosystem.
While we're pimping books The Ethics of What We Eat by Peter Singer is also an interesting reflection on our food choices and their impact :).
 

NT1440

macrumors G5
May 18, 2008
12,141
13,988
While we're pimping books The Ethics of What We Eat by Peter Singer is also an interesting reflection on our food choices and their impact :).
I'll try to get ahold of that, thanks for the tip. :)
 

.Andy

macrumors 68030
Jul 18, 2004
2,946
583
The Mergui Archipelago
I'll try to get ahold of that, thanks for the tip. :)
It's well worth it. Singer (and another guy Jim Mason) follow a omnivorous family, a semi-vegetarian family (mostly vege with some free range meat thrown in), and a vegan family and reflect on the impact of their food choices on animals and the environment. They also do some volunteer work on factory farms to first hand report on why meat is being sourced the way it is and how detrimental it is.

I pretty much dropped milk from my diet after reading it so beware it's persuasive :)!