Beef originating from a single cell used to create the first patty straight from science.
Dr. Mark Post has been hard at work piecing together tiny pieces of beef muscle tissue grown in a laboratory – all for the sake of a five-ounce hamburger that is the first of its kind.
This particular burger is made of in-vitro or “cultured” meat that has been grown entirely within a lab using techniques adapted from medical research for growing tissue and organs. The initial sample – taken from a cow’s neck – has been incubated over time to produce the billions of cells needed for this one burger.
Advocates of cultured meat claim that it could significantly reduce the environmental impact of meat production – reducing water, land and energy use, as well as the emission of greenhouse gases such as methane.
The only issue is that this particular patty cost $325,000 to produce, making it highly unlikely to go into mass production any time soon. More than anything, Dr. Post sees this small success as a way to attract further funding and eventually make the idea of cultured meat an acceptable one to the public – maybe even getting it to a point where it can compete with conventional meat.
The burger will be cooked and eaten at an event in London over the next few weeks to prove it’s not only safe but also edible.