Technology affects different aspects of our everyday life. From shopping online shopping, grocery shopping and business processes, there are many routines performed by technology. With all that being said and done, it faces a new challenge : Food. Ideally we get food from natural sources, like vegetables, cereal and meat. As with any case , science has decided to challenge this.
The quest was taken up initially in 2001 when businessman Willem Van Kooten filed for a worldwide pattern on a process to produce cultured meat. What is cultured meat? To make cultured meat, muscles cells are taken from animals and protein is applied to them to promote tissue growth. This process can produce meat indefinitely resulting in large amount of meat for consumption. Ideally, two months of cultured meat production could deliver upto 50000 tones of meat from 10 pork muscles cells. However, apart from cultured meat, there has been research done on many food products like eggs and even vegetables. There are many factors contributing to artificial food:
Conventional agricultural can be be replaced by genetically modified farm spaces in labs where genetically modified seeds are grown, giving rise to vertical farms (which needs biogas and has its own electrical needs).
Genetic Modification techniques such as insertion, dilation, activation or mututation of gene are not required to make artificial food. The In-vitro meat just consist of the collection of tissues.
PETA has offered 1 million US dollars to anyone capable of producing artificial meat. Also, the argument is that cultured meat doesn’t have a central nervous system for the animal ‘meat’ or ‘flesh’ to feel pain.
While cultured meat doesn’t consist of fats, it still requires Omega-3 fatty acids to be added as health bonus. Many complain that it was “close to meat, but not that juicy” or “like an animal protein cake”.
The idea of artificial food is almost a decade away. While novels such as “The Wind Up Girl” and “Oryx & Crake” promote this idea, movies like “Make room! Make room! (1999)” have already instilled this concept in people’s minds.