Reported by Dominique Mosbergen on the HuffingtonPost.
This story is from the "clean meat" movement. I had not heard of this previously, but it's a growing thing for foodies of the future to replace meat that comes from animals with "meat" grown in a lab.
Taste testers munched on chicken tenders from a lab at Memphis Meats. The verdict? Generally positive: "tastes like chicken. . . a little spongier." Some liked it enough to go back for seconds. Promoters point to advantages: making our food safer, healthier, and better for the environment. Concerns about animal cruelty would disappear, as would the 15 to 20% of greenhouse gases that livestock contribute to climate change.
[added for clarification: This is not the faux chicken you find in vegetarian restaurants made from soy or other substitute products.]
The process begins with a small sample of animal muscle tissue, from which stem cells are harvested and placed in a culture with a special solution that feeds the cells and promotes growth. In the right medium, a single muscle stem cell can multiply into a trillion muscle cells, which merge together into muscle fibers -- becoming almost identical to what's in the meat we now eat. It would take about 8 to 9 weeks to "grow" a hamburger this way -- which seems slow until you compare it with growing from a baby calf into an adult beef cattle.
Price? It's not yet economically practical. Memphis Meats says it's chicken would have to sell at $9,000 per pound. Beef is even higher -- $18,000 per pound.
Maybe they'll throw in the fries for free.