A discussion somewhat came up on a list about new technology. Although a debate has two sides and involves questioning, the exchange of ideas is touchy at best.
The discussion was started by an anonymous animal rights supporter talking of freedom for the animals. An article of “8 Ways In-Vitro Meat will Change Our Lives” brings several points. It predicts an exodus of unemployed farm workers moving to the city to work producing petri-meat, a rousing success to ending raising animals for food. The end to disease spread animal to human. “Farmscrapers” with no soil means all is local. Indeed “urban multi-level greenhouses that utilize hydroponics and interior grow-lights to create bug-free, dirt-free, quick-growing super veggies and fruit (from dwarf trees), delicious side dishes with IVM.” All the no-longer-farms are then available for vacation homes – those areas people in the city go to because the city is too stressful. Hmm.
This leaves out many small farms and “homesteaders” of course. Most will not be using stem cells on the kitchen counter. A closer look at IVM brings some odd points. Celebrated by activists as the answer it’s developed by the corporations they despise.
From another report: “For cells to mature, they must soak in a nutrient-rich soup. The current soup—costly “fetal bovine serum,” or calf’s blood—may soon be replaced by an inexpensive, plant-based substitute that offers a major advantage: It avoids using any animal-based products, satisfying the ethical concerns of some vegetarians. As the cells mature, they must also be stimulated to move as they would be by bone growth and body movement in a living animal. This is done by giving electric jolts or by manually stretching the polymer scaffolding that anchors the cells. In the course of stimulation, the cells convert from what scientists describe as “meat-flavored Jell-O” to the striated, textured fibers we associate with steak.”
Many argue that movement means pain, even if disconnected from the brain. These cells, by that argument, must experience pain to move, something not done by a cow walking across the pasture. Additionally, there is not control over what cells are produced…a little hoof in the meat could be not as tasty as imagined.
Then there is the issues with using stem cells. It’s often opposed for medical reasons so why is it ok to eat it? Still other reports claim soy is the answer to the climate crisis. The balance there is soy is not a healthy option – it’s used for hormone control. The increase in soy could be factors in early puberty of children, blamed on dairy and cattle ranchers.
Many pushing for less processed food are said to support IVM…a highly processed food. Developed not in the pasture by farmers but a laboratory. Progress?
I’ll stick with the real stuff.