Friday 24 Sep 2021 | 04:15 | SYDNEY
Friday 24 Sep 2021 | 04:15 | SYDNEY

In-vitro meat: Don't have a cow, man


Sam Roggeveen


12 August 2010 10:55

Articles about the ways resource constraints (oil, gas, water) will transform the global scene are pretty common. And we're all familiar with debates about the use of technology (solar, wind, the electrification of motor transport) to overcome such shortages.

Here's an article that appeared in November last year (which I've only recently discovered via the marvellous Browser) that ticks both those boxes, but is on a subject seldom associated with transformative international trends: meat. Specifically, it answers the question: 'what are the implications of 'in-vitro meat', which could allow us to cheaply and easily grow meat in labs rather than raising animals''

For one thing, it would bring economic upheaval. Australia is not mentioned, but you get the idea:

The switch to In-Vitro Meat will pummel the finances of nations that survive on live animal industries. Many of the world leaders in massacred meat (USA, China, Brazil) have diversified incomes, but Argentina will bellow when its delicious beef is defeated. New Zealand will bleat when its lamb sales are shorn. And ocean-harvesting Vietnam and Iceland will have to fish for new vocations. Industries peripherally dependent on meat sales, like leather, dairy and wool, will also be slaughtered.

Then there are the environmental, public health and urban planning considerations, and the article also has a list of further reading. More here.

Photo by Flickr user Ferran, used under a Creative Commons license.