Thursday, June 14, 2007

Lab-Grown Meat for Ethical Carnivores

"We're trying to make meat without having to kill animals," Bernard Roelen, a veterinary science professor at Utrecht University, said in an interview.

Although it is in its early stages, the idea is to replace harvesting meat from livestock with a process that eliminates the need for animal feed, transport, land use and the methane expelled by animals, which all hurt the environment, he said.

I get the "Why don't you eat meat?" question surprisingly often, considering I rarely mention my vegetarianism. I don't like using the "ethical" rap (even though I do think meat consumption is fraught with some serious ethical problems), so my latest justification is purely environmental: eating cows (or pigs or whatever) simply doesn't make sense in an age threatened by greenhouse emissions and desertification.

Strangely, a lot of people think eating vat-grown meat is way-gross. Maybe so. But it sure as hell beats the alternative.


Ray Palm (Ray X) said...


Vat-grown meat is mentioned in the book, The Space Merchants, by Pohl and Kornbluth. The novel takes place in the future after mankind has screwed up the planet. Excellent satire. Given your perspective re: man-created problems, you should find it interesting. For example, because of underground nuclear testing, California is plagued by regular earth tremors. The solution: flexible housing made of plastic. Did you ever read it?



Mac said...


Did you ever read it?

Did I ever read it? Of *course* I've read it! ;-)