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  #1  
Old 02-28-2012, 01:25 PM
Lantern Lantern is offline
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Artificial meat

I have often thought that artificial meat could be one of the most important technologies of the 21st century. This article got me thinking about it again.

1) Animals raised for meat consumer lots of land and water and emit lots of greenhouse gases.

2) Farm animals are a major source of infectious diseases some of which can kill humans. It would probably be a lot easier to control conditions for growing artificial meat making it potentially a lot safer.

3)The treatment of farm animals particularly in factory farming is a major ethical issue.

4) From a purely culinary perspective that artificial meat could potentially allow for a lot more variety allowing people to easily enjoy meat from protected species, predators etc. Tigers, dolphins etc.

5) As the developing countries grow richer, demand for meat is set to explode potentially making some of the above problems even more urgent. On the flip side if industrial-style processes make artificial meat cheap enough, it could be a great source of nutrition for relatively poor people especially since it could probably nutritionally fortified in various ways.


The bottom line is that artificial meat seems like a real win from a variety of policy perspectives. At the very least I think it deserves a lot more public research money. Of course the same agricultural lobbies which do such a great job gobbling up taxpayer money may not like the idea very much but perhaps green groups need to push this as a major issue.

Last edited by Lantern; 02-28-2012 at 01:29 PM..
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  #2  
Old 02-28-2012, 01:33 PM
erislover erislover is offline
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I don't think anyone has stopped trying, have they?
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Old 02-28-2012, 01:48 PM
Lantern Lantern is offline
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No, I guess my question is whether public policy could accelerate the process like it does with , say, medical research.
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  #4  
Old 02-28-2012, 01:51 PM
erislover erislover is offline
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I'd definitely be for it. I want to buy a meatponics kit and grow my own Steak-umms.
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  #5  
Old 02-28-2012, 02:17 PM
Acid Lamp Acid Lamp is offline
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Originally Posted by Lantern View Post
I have often thought that artificial meat could be one of the most important technologies of the 21st century. This article got me thinking about it again.

1) Animals raised for meat consumer lots of land and water and emit lots of greenhouse gases.
True, but even artificial meat would require water and produce wastes. Is there a particular shortage of land so severe that we must move to engineered protein factories to accommodate our exploding population? A better solution might include logically thought out population control as well.

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2) Farm animals are a major source of infectious diseases some of which can kill humans. It would probably be a lot easier to control conditions for growing artificial meat making it potentially a lot safer.
I agree. This would largely be beneficial.

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Originally Posted by Lantern View Post
3)The treatment of farm animals particularly in factory farming is a major ethical issue.
Factory farming is a by product of demand. We should couple this program with one that does not encourage selfish indulgence at every opportunity. I'm a near carnivore but I would gladly pay more, (and do) for ethically raised meats.

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Originally Posted by Lantern View Post
4) From a purely culinary perspective that artificial meat could potentially allow for a lot more variety allowing people to easily enjoy meat from protected species, predators etc. Tigers, dolphins etc.
Why not? Sounds great to me. I'd be curious to see how they mimic the effects of the animal's diet though.

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Originally Posted by Lantern View Post
5) As the developing countries grow richer, demand for meat is set to explode potentially making some of the above problems even more urgent. On the flip side if industrial-style processes make artificial meat cheap enough, it could be a great source of nutrition for relatively poor people especially since it could probably nutritionally fortified in various ways.
Agreed.

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Originally Posted by Lantern View Post
The bottom line is that artificial meat seems like a real win from a variety of policy perspectives. At the very least I think it deserves a lot more public research money. Of course the same agricultural lobbies which do such a great job gobbling up taxpayer money may not like the idea very much but perhaps green groups need to push this as a major issue.
Well one problem you'd have to tackle is the "ick" factor. A lot of green groups are made up people who largely vote and act with their hearts rather than their brains. For many of them it is a simple equation of meat=bad, and that's as far as they thought it out. You'll need to win them over. Start with the vegetarians and pescetarians who use artificial meat products for ethical, rather than health reasons.
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Old 02-28-2012, 02:24 PM
furt furt is online now
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Originally Posted by Lantern View Post
The bottom line is that artificial meat seems like a real win from a variety of policy perspectives. At the very least I think it deserves a lot more public research money. Of course the same agricultural lobbies which do such a great job gobbling up taxpayer money may not like the idea very much but perhaps green groups need to push this as a major issue.
I don't see why agricultural companies would be necessarily opposed to it -- the smart ones are going to realize that if someone's going to make a shitload of money on artificial meat, it might as well be them, and get into the game.

Which is exactly why, IMO, tons of taxpayer money aren't needed: a technology like this, which has such clear commercial applications, will get plenty of private funding if it begins to look truly viable -- and as yet, they've a long way to go. Anyone with any brains at all can see the enormous potential; even if artificial meat proves not viable for human consumption (because people find the idea icky or it proves unpalatable), the animal-products market alone is immense. I am quite confident the scientists at ADM and all the rest are staying abreast of the research in this field.

The best rationale for government-funded science is that the private sector is much less inclined to develop things which have little or no commercial application. Given the fact that government grant money is finite, I'd prefer to see those limited resources go to pure academic research, not towards supplementing Monsanto's R&D budget.

Last edited by furt; 02-28-2012 at 02:24 PM..
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Old 02-28-2012, 02:27 PM
erislover erislover is offline
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furt I think you may overestimate the eagerness with which a company would spend risky research dollars into a huge commodity industry. If they're going to grow tissue, it will not be for consumption but medical purposes. Maybe then, after the patent expires, we'll get to eat cheap meat.

Last edited by erislover; 02-28-2012 at 02:27 PM..
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  #8  
Old 02-28-2012, 02:33 PM
Lantern Lantern is offline
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Originally Posted by Acid Lamp View Post
True, but even artificial meat would require water and produce wastes. Is there a particular shortage of land so severe that we must move to engineered protein factories to accommodate our exploding population?
The article says 30% of world's ice-free land is used to raise animals. With artificial meat some of this land could be turned to wilderness acting as a carbon sink. And there would be fewer farm animals spewing greenhouse gases like methane into the atmosphere. Of course artificial meat would have some environmental impact too but fundamentally I think it's a lot more efficient just growing the meat you want rather than raising a whole animal for perhaps years.
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  #9  
Old 02-28-2012, 02:43 PM
Lantern Lantern is offline
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The rationale for public research money is externalities. As described in my OP, artificial meat has a number of social benefits in terms of the environment and public health in addition to the purely commercial benefit. Hence the private sector is likely to underinvest in this research. Again it's similar to medical research which would exist without government funding but which is accelerated by the latter.
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  #10  
Old 02-28-2012, 02:53 PM
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Originally Posted by erislover View Post
furt I think you may overestimate the eagerness with which a company would spend risky research dollars into a huge commodity industry. If they're going to grow tissue, it will not be for consumption but medical purposes. Maybe then, after the patent expires, we'll get to eat cheap meat.
I'm so glad that on re-read, you used the word 'patent' and not 'patient'!
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Old 02-28-2012, 03:00 PM
erislover erislover is offline
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  #12  
Old 02-28-2012, 03:24 PM
Blake Blake is offline
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Originally Posted by Lantern View Post
The article says 30% of world's ice-free land is used to raise animals. With artificial meat some of this land could be turned to wilderness acting as a carbon sink.
Let's look at this for a second.

You say 30% of the land area, so you are looking at an area of about 50 million km^2.

1) How do you propose to fund this wilderness area? Wilderness doesn't just stake care of itself. To have any actual value it needs infraststructure. It needs constant weed and pest animal control. It need slaw enforcement. It needs management. The budget for national parks in the US is about a billion dollars a year, for an area of less than 50, 000 km^2. Your proposal would require a budget of at least a trillion dollars a year. It would actually be an order of magnitude larger than that, because US national parks are so small that they largely don't need their own infrastructure or law enforcement. Once you convert area that are 1/4 the size of the lower 48 into uninhabitable wilderness, those areas are going to need their own roads, their own police, their own emergency services etc. But they will have no income base at all to support such things. Where is this money coming from?

2) Why would the land be returned to wilderness? Are you proposing to forcibly acquire this land under eminent domain? If so, add several trillion dollars to your required budget? If you don't do so, then people are just going to keep farming the land. If they can't compete with synthetic meat, they are going to turn to producing crops on what is marginal farming land, leading to severe environmental problems.

3) On a global scale grazing land is a major carbon sink. When the land ceases being grazed, it becomes a carbon source. Far from your wilderness acting as a carbon sink, exactly the opposite would occur. It would lead to a massive increase in greenhouse gas emissions.

From an environmental perspective, if we could somehow revert all grazing land to wilderness it would be a catastrophe unprecedented in the past 10, 00 years. From an economic and social perspective it would probably be more catastrophic. The social upheaval, loss of control of vast tracts of land and economic restructuring would be devastating.

Which highlights why it's always worth considering actual consequences rather than working from an assumption that humans are eeeevil.
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  #13  
Old 02-28-2012, 03:28 PM
erislover erislover is offline
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3) On a global scale grazing land is a major carbon sink. When the land ceases being grazed, it becomes a carbon source.
Can you please point me in the right direction here?
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Which highlights why it's always worth considering actual consequences rather than working from an assumption that humans are eeeevil.
That seems to be creating a mountain out of a molehill of an OP. Even if it isn't used for wilderness, if we make meat cheaper to produce the next best use (which for some of it could indeed be wilderness) would step up, giving whatever was just edged out better resources.

Which highlights why it is always worth considering actual consequences etc.
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  #14  
Old 02-28-2012, 03:42 PM
furt furt is online now
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Originally Posted by erislover View Post
furt I think you may overestimate the eagerness with which a company would spend risky research dollars into a huge commodity industry. If they're going to grow tissue, it will not be for consumption but medical purposes. Maybe then, after the patent expires, we'll get to eat cheap meat.
There likely wouldn't be "a" patent. We're talking about a potential whole sector, not one specific product, and the process for growing prime rib in a lab is not going to be exactly the same as that for growing a human kidney; even if it were, if the artificial meat is viable as a comestible, there's no reason the company in question wouldn't do both (and if it's not viable, nobody would).

I'm not opposed to it per se; there are no doubt much more stupid and useless things that get funded by federal grants, but IMO, it's less deserving of federal funds than, say, astrophysics or pure microbiology or other things that are much, much farther down on the commercial-potential scale. Yes, it has potential positive externalities; but nearly all research does (including astrophysics). It's also likely decades away from even getting close to realizing them (if it ever does), but when it does get close, everyone knows exactly how big the market is.

Unless you're going to say that all research into everything should be funded (presumably by the money fairy), making artificial meat a major R&D priority means taking money away from something else it's currently being spent on.

To the extent it takes away from baldness-prevention research, it's a win in my view. To the extent it takes away from exploring subatomic particles, it's a loss. IMO, the second is much more likely.
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Old 02-28-2012, 03:44 PM
Skammer Skammer is offline
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Blake, I don't understand a lot of your post.

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Originally Posted by Blake View Post
Let's look at this for a second.

You say 30% of the land area, so you are looking at an area of about 50 million km^2.

1) How do you propose to fund this wilderness area? Wilderness doesn't just stake care of itself.
Doesn't it? Isn't that exactly what wilderness is? I don't think he's proposing a National Park, he's proposing actual undeveloped wilderness.
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To have any actual value it needs infraststructure. It needs constant weed and pest animal control. It need slaw enforcement. It needs management.
I don't see why it needs any of that, or it wouldn't exactly be wilderness.

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2) Why would the land be returned to wilderness? Are you proposing to forcibly acquire this land under eminent domain? If so, add several trillion dollars to your required budget? If you don't do so, then people are just going to keep farming the land. If they can't compete with synthetic meat, they are going to turn to producing crops on what is marginal farming land, leading to severe environmental problems.
These are all good points.

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3) On a global scale grazing land is a major carbon sink. When the land ceases being grazed, it becomes a carbon source. Far from your wilderness acting as a carbon sink, exactly the opposite would occur. It would lead to a massive increase in greenhouse gas emissions.
That's counterintuitive; can you explain?

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Which highlights why it's always worth considering actual consequences rather than working from an assumption that humans are eeeevil.
I didn't read that assumption into the OP.

Last edited by Skammer; 02-28-2012 at 03:45 PM..
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Old 02-28-2012, 03:46 PM
erislover erislover is offline
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There likely wouldn't be "a" patent. We're talking about a potential whole sector, not one specific product, and the process for growing prime rib in a lab is not going to be exactly the same as that for growing a human kidney; even if it were, if the artificial meat is viable as a comestible, there's no reason the company in question wouldn't do both (and if it's not viable, nobody would).
Nevertheless, they're going to rush to some other market full of their cronies first, which is not going to be the local discount supermarket. But of course, given the level to which our government has been captured, even if we did fund it, we still let everyone keep their patents anyway.
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Unless you're going to say that all research into everything should be funded (presumably by the money fairy), making artificial meat a major R&D priority means taking money away from something else it's currently being spent on.
There are interesting economic reasons why government would consider funding research. Some even put forward by conservative economists. But I guess someone who is already at the ready to bring up money fairies isn't actually interested in such a discussion. It'd be a hijack anyway, I guess.
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Old 02-28-2012, 04:17 PM
furt furt is online now
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Nevertheless, they're going to rush to some other market full of their cronies first, which is not going to be the local discount supermarket.
Of course. Pretty much all new products become first available to those with the most resources, regardless of who (if anyone) funded the research. That's basic economics.

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But of course, given the level to which our government has been captured, even if we did fund it, we still let everyone keep their patents anyway.
Often enough. Seems like a pretty good reason to not use government money to do commercial research to me.

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There are interesting economic reasons why government would consider funding research. Some even put forward by conservative economists.
I'm well aware of them, and I've said twice that don't have a problem with government-funded research per se. I'm less enthusiastic, however, about government-funded research which prioritizes the development of commercially-viable products. ISTM that's primarily the job of whoever aims to sell said product.

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But I guess someone who is already at the ready to bring up money fairies isn't actually interested in such a discussion.
If you're of the opinion that government funding is not finite, then I agree that I'm not interested in discussion.
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  #18  
Old 02-28-2012, 04:44 PM
BrainGlutton BrainGlutton is online now
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Originally Posted by Lantern View Post
4) From a purely culinary perspective that artificial meat could potentially allow for a lot more variety allowing people to easily enjoy meat from protected species, predators etc. Tigers, dolphins etc.
You know where this is going, don't you? Cannibalisn't. Anthropofauxgy. Test-tube-babycakes.

Last edited by BrainGlutton; 02-28-2012 at 04:48 PM..
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Old 02-28-2012, 04:45 PM
erislover erislover is offline
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Now that you took it there
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Old 02-28-2012, 04:52 PM
JoelUpchurch JoelUpchurch is offline
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I would like to point out that it will probably take decades before lab meat is economically viable, but you can reduce the environmental footprint by switching from beef and lamb to chicken and pork. The methane produced by ruminants is a significant source of greenhouse gases.

This article says the GHG footprint of beef is 13 times that of chicken.

http://www.scientificamerican.com/me...E64FECCA_2.jpg

http://www.scientificamerican.com/ar...ouse-hamburger

I actually tried to compute the GHG footprint for cheese, but my numbers are very rough, since it is difficult to compute how many ounces of milk go into an ounce of cheese.

http://www.anupchurchchrestomathy.com/search?q=cheese
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Old 02-28-2012, 04:55 PM
BrainGlutton BrainGlutton is online now
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Now that you took it there
Oh, somebody will IRL, it's inevitable. (Assuming perfected artificial-meat-growing technology.) And eventually it will get out, if it's ever in. And then there will be legislation and litigation and controversy and electoral litmus-tests on the issue.

Last edited by BrainGlutton; 02-28-2012 at 04:58 PM..
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  #22  
Old 02-28-2012, 05:03 PM
erislover erislover is offline
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Well we already know that RCC will refuse to help anyone who has eaten faux-human. But will artificial pork be kosher? These are the questions that drive us all.
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  #23  
Old 02-28-2012, 06:10 PM
Ruby Slippers Ruby Slippers is offline
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One more possible benefit which I don't believe has been mentioned yet: in the thread from which this was spun off, someone mentioned the problem of overuse of antibiotics in food animals and pointed out that this practice, more than overprescribing for humans, is a major driver in the growth of multiply resistant bacteria. I'm assuming that if the meat is grown in a laboratory, it won't require antibiotics.
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Old 02-28-2012, 07:00 PM
andros andros is offline
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You know where this is going, don't you? Cannibalisn't. Anthropofauxgy. Test-tube-babycakes.
"I'm Spider Jerusalem, and I approve this message."
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Old 02-28-2012, 07:40 PM
Trinopus Trinopus is offline
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Heck, even now, at the state of the art today, fake meats aren't too bad. Soya burgers won't fool anybody into thinking they're made of cow, but they are kinda yummy for what they are. I think this will be a huge growth industry in the next decade or two, and I'm wholly in favor of it. It's win/win/win/win/win!
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Old 02-28-2012, 08:10 PM
Ruby Slippers Ruby Slippers is offline
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I'm betting the first artificial meat product will be Spam. Closely followed by hot dogs.
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Old 02-28-2012, 08:17 PM
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slaw enforcement
Motto: "protect and serve the right condiments on your artificial hot dog".
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Old 02-28-2012, 10:10 PM
BMalion BMalion is online now
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What about Soylent Green?
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  #29  
Old 02-28-2012, 10:23 PM
DSeid DSeid is offline
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As to the potential positive impact IF artificial meat could be produced that was as palatable as the real thing and for the same or less cost, let us use China as a case study:
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Starting in 1979, pork became the most produced and consumed meat in the world. The reason for its ascent to the top of the global meat heap is simple: China. In 2010 alone, farmers and companies in China produced more than 50 million metric tons of pork, virtually all of which was sold and consumed domestically ...

... The consequences of these changes in pig production and pig feeding have wide-ranging impacts. In terms of environmental degradation, agriculture in general—and livestock farming in particular—are the most important sources of pollution in China. Livestock farms produce more than 4 billion tons of manure annually, much of which contributes to nutrient overload in waterways and subsequent eutrophication and dead zones. Globally, as more and more land is converted to intensive monocrop production of soybeans and corn (and others in a narrow range of industrial feed crops), pesticide and fertilizers pollute waterways, biodiversity declines, natural carbon sinks are destroyed, and greenhouse gases are emitted in all stages of intensive feed production and transport.

Industrial pig feeding also carries a range public health concerns. China is becoming increasingly infamous as a site of food safety scandals, most of which stem from feed additives such as hormones and growth regulators ending up in meat and livestock products. On top of this, the prophylactic administration of antibiotics in confined animal feeding operations (CAFOs) has resulted in antibiotic-resistant and disease-causing organisms emerging in China, just as in the United States and Europe ...
Humanity's growing appetite for animal flesh (just heard a report on NPR this morning about how vegetarianism is becoming passe among the middle class and above in India now) is unsustainable, and has significant environmental consequences. At least as animal flesh is currently produced.

Artificial meat theoretically could need dramatically fewer resources as inputs and produce many fewer harmful outputs. It could free up land for other purposes, perhaps biomass for energy, or more food, or indeed as forests to function as carbon sinks. (Like that would happen.) It could be designed to have the protein of one animal, any particular mouth feel, and yet have salmon adipocytes mixed in to provide more omega 3s.

I relish the concept and can't wait until the technology can catch up to the role I say it should have, yes, the says me role.

Last edited by DSeid; 02-28-2012 at 10:24 PM..
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Old 02-29-2012, 12:20 AM
thelabdude thelabdude is offline
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Be interesting to see how such a product fares in a society banning genetically modified grains from the human food chain.

Logic says go for it. As mentioned demand for grazing land is a severe problem. So is bush meat. Malnutrition?

I would want strict labeling laws. Those wanting Angus and paying for it are entittled to it
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Old 02-29-2012, 12:28 AM
Lantern Lantern is offline
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Interesting article in the Guardian:

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According to the analysis by scientists from Oxford University and Amsterdam University, lab-grown tissue would reduce greenhouse gases by up to 96% in comparison to raising animals. The process would require between 7% and 45% less energy than the same volume of conventionally produced meat such as pork, beef, or lamb, and could be engineered to use only 1% of the land and 4% of the water associated with conventional meat.
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Old 02-29-2012, 12:54 AM
Cat Whisperer Cat Whisperer is offline
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Are we actually at the stage where we can develop a decent, palatable vat meat?
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Old 02-29-2012, 05:54 AM
DSeid DSeid is offline
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Are we actually at the stage where we can develop a decent, palatable vat meat?
No.
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Old 02-29-2012, 11:20 AM
Tom Tildrum Tom Tildrum is offline
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Why would it require less input of resources?

Last edited by Tom Tildrum; 02-29-2012 at 11:20 AM..
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Old 02-29-2012, 11:55 AM
TripleFail TripleFail is offline
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It would require less input of resources because there wouldn't be any need to grow bones, brains, fur etc.
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Old 02-29-2012, 12:31 PM
BMalion BMalion is online now
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"Tofu, the other fake white meat."
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Old 02-29-2012, 02:22 PM
Michael63129 Michael63129 is offline
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It would require less input of resources because there wouldn't be any need to grow bones, brains, fur etc.
For some numbers, according to this article, muscle (which is what most meat eaten is) accounts for about 1/4 of the resting metabolic rate (RMR) in a human (presumably similar for other animals, except for maybe the brain):

Quote:
"Brain function makes up close to 20% of RMR," he said. "Next is the heart, which is beating all the time and accounts for another 15-20%. The liver, which also functions at rest, contributes another 15-20%. Then you have the kidneys and lungs and other tissues, so what remains is muscle, contributing only 20-25% of total resting metabolism."
Add to that calories expended during movement and the final number is even lower, although the quality and texture of unexercised muscle is different (not that many animals raised for food get much), thus methods have been proposed to exercise artificial meat (although, in products made of ground-up meat that probably wouldn't make a difference).

Also, artificial meat could be grown much faster, which would reduce the amount of energy needed to sustain the RMR (due to less time), which is normally much higher than the energy used in growth (e.g. if RMR is 10 times the energy used for growth and the growth rate could be increased by 10 times, then they would become equal, plus the RMR would be over 1/10th of the time, effectively 100 times less compared to growth energy).
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Old 02-29-2012, 09:58 PM
DSeid DSeid is offline
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... I actually tried to compute the GHG footprint for cheese, but my numbers are very rough, since it is difficult to compute how many ounces of milk go into an ounce of cheese. ...
I knew I had seen a study that did this. Here.
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For protein-rich food, such as legumes, meat, fish, cheese, and eggs, the difference is a factor of 30 with the lowest emissions per kilogram for legumes, poultry, and eggs and the highest for beef, cheese, and pork. Large emissions for ruminants are explained mainly by methane emissions from enteric fermentation. For vegetables and fruits, emissions usually are ≤2.5 kg CO2 equivalents/kg product, even if there is a high degree of processing and substantial transportation. Products transported by plane are an exception because emissions may be as large as for certain meats. Emissions from foods rich in carbohydrates, such as potatoes, pasta, and wheat, are <1.1 kg/kg edible food. We suggest that changes in the diet toward more plant-based foods, toward meat from animals with little enteric fermentation, and toward foods processed in an energy-efficient manner offer an interesting and little explored area for mitigating climate change...
They come up with 11 kg CO2 equivalents/kg of product for cheese; half as much as beef and 2 1/2 times more than chicken. Not so far off from your calculations.
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Old 02-29-2012, 10:10 PM
andros andros is offline
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It would require less input of resources because there wouldn't be any need to grow bones, brains, fur etc.
Also time, space, possibly fuel . . .
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Old 02-29-2012, 11:22 PM
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Originally Posted by BMalion View Post
"Tofu, the other fake white meat."
You laugh, but I've been living with vegetarians and some of that tofu is damn good. I eat a lot less meat than I used to.
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  #41  
Old 03-01-2012, 08:39 AM
Nava Nava is offline
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Originally Posted by Lantern View Post
The article says 30% of world's ice-free land is used to raise animals. With artificial meat some of this land could be turned to wilderness acting as a carbon sink.
I suspect that Gobi, Sahara or Mojave aren't particularly good as carbon sinks go, yet they're not very useful for herding either. Dry land isn't composed exclusively of "packed-up-farms" and "bucollic, perfectly ecologically balanced forests".
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Old 03-06-2012, 08:18 PM
sisu sisu is offline
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Originally Posted by Lantern View Post
The article says 30% of world's ice-free land is used to raise animals. With artificial meat some of this land could be turned to wilderness acting as a carbon sink. And there would be fewer farm animals spewing greenhouse gases like methane into the atmosphere. Of course artificial meat would have some environmental impact too but fundamentally I think it's a lot more efficient just growing the meat you want rather than raising a whole animal for perhaps years.
30% is a crap figure, we have farms in Australia that are the size of freaken countries with only a few thousand head of cattle. Some land is so marginal that growing anything on it would be nigh on impossible.
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Old 03-07-2012, 12:58 AM
JoelUpchurch JoelUpchurch is offline
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Originally Posted by DSeid View Post
I knew I had seen a study that did this. Here.
They come up with 11 kg CO2 equivalents/kg of product for cheese; half as much as beef and 2 1/2 times more than chicken. Not so far off from your calculations.
I found another estimate of 8.3kg C02/per kilo of cheese.
http://somethingspecialwi.com/docume...eese-pages.pdf

I actually found several studies on this matter, but none of them seem to reference my blog.

My pasteurized process cheese food weights 19 grams per slice which works out to .17 kg CO2 per slice of cheese. I not certain how much actual milk is involved in cheese 'food'.

There is some interesting work by biologists trying to transplant genes from kangaroos to cattle and develop a non-flatulent cow.

Of course, chickens and turkeys are pretty efficient protein factories. I wonder if it would be easier to develop a dumber chicken, so people don't get attached to them? How much actual brain does it take to eat and poop? I don't how chickens compare to aquaculture farms. Maybe it would be easier to come up with a fish that tastes like chicken.
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Old 03-07-2012, 02:03 AM
Lantern Lantern is offline
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Originally Posted by sisu View Post
30% is a crap figure, we have farms in Australia that are the size of freaken countries with only a few thousand head of cattle. Some land is so marginal that growing anything on it would be nigh on impossible.
If it's grazing land, presumably it grows grass. Allowing grass to grow is a lot better for the environment than letting cows eat it and belch methane. And there are other parts of the world where cattle farming is a serious threat to forests.
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Old 03-07-2012, 07:45 AM
Revtim Revtim is online now
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Originally Posted by Lantern View Post
4) From a purely culinary perspective that artificial meat could potentially allow for a lot more variety allowing people to easily enjoy meat from protected species, predators etc. Tigers, dolphins etc.
I wonder if this might be the major driving force behind private research. Bill Gates decides he wants a legal hippo-burger, so he throws a few million bucks at the problem.

And looking far ahead, I wonder if someday there will be vat-grown meats that really have no clear correspondence to animals. Your favorite meat will be a particular brand, perhaps a variety of that brand, and it's name will be as arbitrary as a car model. I prefer a steak made from Kraft Harmongulous, but you prefer the General Mills Parfalintrask.
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Old 03-10-2012, 10:34 AM
The Niply Elder The Niply Elder is offline
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this kinda went under the radar, but it's classic SD

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Originally Posted by DSeid View Post
I relish the concept and can't wait until the technology can catch up to the role I say it should have, yes, the says me role.
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  #47  
Old 03-10-2012, 06:52 PM
Cheshire Human Cheshire Human is offline
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Originally Posted by Revtim View Post
And looking far ahead, I wonder if someday there will be vat-grown meats that really have no clear correspondence to animals. Your favorite meat will be a particular brand, perhaps a variety of that brand, and it's name will be as arbitrary as a car model. I prefer a steak made from Kraft Harmongulous, but you prefer the General Mills Parfalintrask.
I read an SF short story, probably while I was in high school, to this effect. The setting was a civil suit trial, one company against another, where the suing company had been hurt in market share because the sued company had come out with a new brand. The premise of the story was that people had forgotten where food naturally came from, and the trial lawyer had to tell the jury about "our primitive ancestors" food growing technology, introduce the concept of "meat" and where it came from, and finally the last line of the story was the lawyer introducing the jury to the word "cannibal". I wish I could remember title and author. It would be perfect reading for this thread.
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Old 03-10-2012, 10:51 PM
gamerunknown gamerunknown is offline
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A better solution might include logically thought out population control as well.
Logical population control tends to encounter problems like humans.

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If they can't compete with synthetic meat
Assuming they'd need to. Spindle workers didn't need to compete with power looms. The amount of food produced wasn't reduced, so given an appropriate distributive system there's no problem, right? Well, other than the starvation.
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Old 03-12-2012, 06:37 PM
sisu sisu is offline
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Originally Posted by Lantern View Post
If it's grazing land, presumably it grows grass. Allowing grass to grow is a lot better for the environment than letting cows eat it and belch methane. And there are other parts of the world where cattle farming is a serious threat to forests.
Grazing land with very poor soils, lots of rocks and large distances between towns, there are bigger issues in regards to hard hoofed animals and the degradation to soils but nothing will grow there of any commercial value, except kangaroos mmmm kangaroo steaks....

Yep, destroying rainforests for cattle is not a win win situation
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  #50  
Old 03-12-2012, 07:13 PM
DSeid DSeid is offline
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Originally Posted by JoelUpchurch View Post
I found another estimate of 8.3kg C02/per kilo of cheese. ...
... Of course, chickens and turkeys are pretty efficient protein factories. I wonder if it would be easier to develop a dumber chicken, so people don't get attached to them? How much actual brain does it take to eat and poop?

Hey, I for one was pretty impressed. That takes some brains. Something few think chickens have much of as it is. Maybe they aren't as dumb as we think they are, but few critters other than turkeys have people really believing that they are dumb enough to drown in the rain.

The Niply Elder, thank you.
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