Scientists Unveiled World’s First Lab-Grown Beef Burger

Aug 6, 2013 13:34 IST

Scientists from the Maastricht University in the Netherlands, on 5 August 2013, unveiled the first lab-grown beef burger of the world, depicting the food revolution. The world’s first lab-grown beef burger was served to the volunteers in London.

Features of the world’s first lab-grown beef burger project

• The world’s first lab-grown beef burger has the 140g or around 5 ounce patty. The cost of production of this patty is 250000 Euros or 330000 US dollar.
• The patty is made by making use of the strands of meat grown from the stem cells extracted from a living cow.
• The scientists claimed that when mixed with breadcrumbs, egg powder and salt, for improving its taste; as well as coloured with red beetroot juice and saffron; it will taste very much like a usual burger.
• The meat for the burger was developed in the lab of Professor Mark Post of Maastricht University in the Netherlands.
• The burger is absolutely safe.
• It also has the capability of replacing the normal meat in diets of people.
• One of the founders of Google- Sergey Brin is one of the financial backers of this project.
• 50 people in all were involved in the research across the world, but primarily in North America and Netherlands.

The patty was served to Austrian food researcher Hanni Ruetzler and US-based food author Josh Schonwald, who were the volunteers. There have been rising concerns about the increasing demand of meat, which in turn puts pressure on the Earth. The cultured beef can therefore be used for solving this problem.

How was the burger produced?

The team of scientists in Maastricht took out the cells from organic cows. These cells were then placed in the nutrient solution in order to create the muscle tissue. These were then grown into small strands of meat. 20000 of these strands of meat were used for making the burger.

Future of cultured beef

At present, the cost of cultured beef is 250000 Euros or 330000 US dollar, which is very high. Nevertheless, the team of scientists claimed that costs of cultured beef would drop down with more production. It is expected to be in the markets in next one or two decades.

Advantages of test tube meat

There are a lot of reasons why test tube meat should be supported. The reasons range from environment protection to public health and animal welfare. Also, the lab-produced meat does not carry any risk of disease. It also does not need to be treated with the antibiotics.

A study found that the lab-grown beef makes use of 45 percent less energy than average global representative figure for farming cattle. At the same time, it also produces 96 percent less greenhouse gas emissions. It requires 99 percent less land as well.

It is also important to note that the animal rights group called Peta, funded research in the United States so far and had also offered one million US dollar or 750000 euros prize for that lab which is capable to produce and bring out in-vitro chicken meat to the market.

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