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February 20, 2012

Progress to factory grown meat

UK Telegraph - Prof Mark Post, of Maastricht University in the Netherlands, yesterday announced the world's first test tube hamburger would be served up in October. Heston Blumenthal, the experimental chef, will cook the patty grown in a lab from a cow's stem cells. Each portion will cost £220,000, but Prof Post hopes if the burger is a success he can develop the technology on an industrial scale.

Post's aim is to invent an efficient way to produce skeletal muscle tissue in a laboratory that exactly mimics meat, and eventually replace the entire meat-animal industry.

The ingredients for his first burger are "still in a laboratory phase," he said, but by spring "we have committed ourselves to make a couple of thousand of small tissues, and then assemble them into a hamburger."




Post spoke at a symposium titled "The Next Agricultural Revolution" at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in Vancouver.

Speakers said they aim to develop such "meat" products for mass consumption to reduce the environmental and health costs of conventional food production.

Conventional meat and dairy production requires more land, water, plants and disposal of waste products than almost all other human foods, they said.

The global demand for meat is expected to rise by 60 percent by 2050, said American scientist Nicholas Genovese, who organized the symposium.

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