This is getting ridiculous.
Last year, this column has covered the way-too-dramatic-for-its-actual-impact media hype over the launch “world’s first in-vitro hamburger.” The cost of that test-tube hunk of globular protein: about $350,000.
But we were assured by the scientist dabbling in this new technology that “costs will come down” once mass production begins.
Which is like saying that saying, “Your sunburn pain will subside once you put on a shirt.”
Both statements, while true, completely ignore the fact that a conscious choice created the “situation” that time ultimately resolves. It’s not fair to call it “progress” when the starting point was the creation of a ridiculously expensive food product—or a decision to spend six hours sunbathing in August—and then crowing about the fact that at some future point in time, the situation is better than when you started.
The “genius” behind this idea that meat and poultry can be replaced by cultured protoplasm cooked up in giant test tubes in some industrial warehouse, and that process would somehow be more energy efficient than cows grazing on grass (that grows for free) is Dr. Mark Post of Maastricht University in Holland.
On his website, Culturedmeat.net, Post had the nerve to proclaim that this sci-fi-worthy experiment was in response to the “critical food shortages: facing the world, and that his “cultured beef” represents “the crucial first step in finding a sustainable alternative to meat production.”
Wanna know what the next step is? A fake “cookbook” for fake in-vitro cultured meat.
Koert van Mensvoort, who heads up the Next Nature Lab at Eindhoven University of Technology in The Netherlands, is using the one-year anniversary of Post’s six-figure fake burger media fest to tout the launch of what his marketing people are cleverly positioning as “the world’s first cookbook for lab-grown food.”
Not because no one came up with that bright idea before, mind you, but because no one was even thinking about eating “lab-grown food.”
This so-called cookbook, as the publicity blurb explains, “Aims to move beyond in-vitro meat as an inferior fake-meat replacement, to explore its creative prospects and visualize what in-vitro meat products might be on our plate one day.”
Let’s get one thing straight: In-vitro meat, which is a tasteless, whitish blob of protein grown on laboratory media, is an inferior fake-meat replacement.