World’s First Test-Tube Burger to be Eaten Next Week
The world’s first in vitro meat will be prepared as a burger and served at a special event in London next week, according to Food Navigator. The five ounce lab-grown beef patty took over two years over $380,000 to produce.
To make the in vitro meat, Professor Mark Post from University of Maastricht in Holland took stem cells from cattle and put them in a nutrient-filled mixture to grow muscle tissue, Daily Mail reported. That tissue was then stuck to Velcro and stretched to strengthen the muscles. To create the burger, the 3,000 strips of the meat will be ground up and mixed with 200 pieces of lab-produced animal fat.
Post received funding for his research from an anonymous businessman, who may also be the taster at the event. The burger tasting will be a “proof of principle,” and there are plans to “economize the [manufacturing] processes,” Post told Food Navigator. Although more research is needed to mass-produce in vitro meat, it is possible that we will see them in supermarkets in about two decades. "Cultured beef production has a long way to go and will not be on the market for some time as the technique still needs to be refined and altered to allow for mass production," according to Maastricht University’s press release.
Commercially viable lab-grown meat has the potential to decrease animal slaughter, conserve the environment’s resources, and tackle world hunger, and the in vitro burger is the first step towards those goals.