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InVitro meat


Science Developed Artificial Meat Without Killing Animals

What sounds like a science-fiction story has become a reality in the past few years in some laboratories around the globe. There, scientists are working on alternative meat production methods where meat no longer comes from a slaughtered animal, but is being grown artificially in labs. The first lab born burger was shown, cooked and tasted in 2013.


More and more articles and further studies are popping up everywhere around the world about this topic. Animal welfare and animal rights activists are wondering whether cultured-meat (also known as ‘invitro’, or ‘clean’ meat) could put an end to all the negative implications of today’s farm animal production.


As this issue is becoming more present on the public agenda, FOUR PAWS is closely monitoring the progress, and so far we know the following: 


In-Vitro meat is produced in a cell culture, rather than from a whole animal. The process is complex, but simple to understand; stem cells from a farm animal are grown in a nutrient-rich medium. After the cells multiply, they naturally merge together-causing them to grow into small strands of muscle tissue. These strands are then layered to form familiar meat products like hamburgers, sausages and chicken nuggets.


With conventional animal products accounting for over 56 billion lives of animals per year, 70% of global water consumption, 40% of land use and 15% of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions, invitro meat could help us conserve our limited resources and have the potential to save billions of animals per year from inhumane conditions and eventual slaughter. This is an initiative FOUR PAWS is strongly in favor of.


Though large-scale manufacturing of cultured meat is costly, which includes the cost of cell culture and skilled labor, the costs are drastically decreasing which highlights the potential of making invitro meat available to the masses in the not so distant future. We currently don’t know what the clear consequences for farm animals and their welfare would be, but the advancements in recent years encourages optimism in the processes and the potential positive impact invitro meat would have. Since this innovation is still currently on going, with an ever increasing interest, we presume that a massive change in the farming of animals is then likely to happen.


For the time being, FOUR PAWS is closely monitoring the ongoing research and latest developments concerning invitro meat with a positive outlook, as well as the changes of peoples eating habits within our society.


Still, FOUR PAWS encourages people who choose an animal-friendly lifestyle to reduce their consumption of animal derived products and include more plant-based alternatives in their diet. 


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