August 05, 2013

Will lab-grown meat make feed millers redundant?

At 250,000 euro, you would expect the cow behind the world's most expensive burger to have lived a life of luxury.

However, the cow in question never existed.

Funded by Google co-founder Sergey Brin, the burger is made up of more than 20,000 muscle fibres from cow stem cells grown over three-month period in a lab at Maastrict University, the Netherlands.

The fibres were extracted from individual culture wells and then pressed together into a recognisable burger patty.

Although in its infancy, the technology could be a sustainable way of meeting rise demand for meat.

However, critics have suggested that simply eating less meat would be an easier alternative.

During a taste test at press conference in London today, the burger was well-received by dinners who praised its authentic texture. The one criticism seemed to be the lack of fat!

The next stage of the research is to improve the taste and appearance.

At present, scientists can only make very small quantities of meat; larger portions would require a artificial circulatory systems to distribute nutrients and oxygen.

So feed millers won't be out of a job any time soon.

Watch a video of the taste test.


Fantastic 10oz Certified Angus Beef Burger. Si...
A real beef burger (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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