‘A burger made with lab-grown meat will be unveiled for the first time at a London event next month’.
This is just silly. And foolish. And irresponsible. And ill-fated.
Everytime man thinks he can improve on nature, he effs everything up. And this is taking it up a level, to solve a problem using the same means which got us into the current food and health situation. The human, societal and health ramifications of this are likely to be immense. They are unfathomable, and it is highly unlikely they will be constructive. Humans are attempting to negotiate a not negotiable situation: Ownership of the growing of their food.
I understand your desire to reduce animal suffering, and I respect that, but I believe you would be trading it for human suffering in the longterm, and I think that is worse, because it will in turn cause more planetary suffering in general. Sick humans cannot govern a healthy planet. What is happening with factory farming and chronic, preventable disease is not okay. This will, however, create a whole new set of problems, without even necessarily solving the current problems. Everyone won’t accept this. And whatever ‘real’ meat is still farmed, will still be farmed as economically as possible, within a capitalist society. A deeper overhaul is instead required. This is a band-aid solution. It doesn’t heal anything. I’d prefer to have people either take responsibility for their food (and their health), by growing and killing their own animals for consumption only a few times a week, or be vegetarian or vegan.
Just because it is natural doesn’t mean it’s good, no. Like women dying during childbirth. But is much that is unnatural proved to be good? Or without unforeseen cost and consequence? I am passionate about animal rights, and the environment, but also about human health. Every time science has come up with a way to ‘feed the world, cheaply’ which isn’t for people to take their own responsibility for what the eat, it’s disastrous. Like processed meat causing cancer. Or homogenization and pasteurization contributing to milk allergies and lactose intolerance. Or pesticide use creating deformed babies. Or processed food causing diabetes. Or high fructose corn syrup causing an obesity epidemic and lowered life expectancy. (The list goes on and on…). Science would demand facts, but ‘scientific fact’ ≠ wise. Science only ever sees one segment of a given reality at a time. The ‘facts’ of fact-ory farming created the current environmental and health problems in the first place. (Like, science saying that it would be okay to cramp animals together and use antibiotics to control infection. Or to make them grow unnaturally fast and ‘meaty’, which means with more saturated fat, less omegas and vitamin D, which means more cardiovascular disease). Science gives us the isolated ‘facts’, and reason and ethics give us the decisions. Reason tells me this is not good. Ethics tells me this is not good. We’re creating science fiction monsters.
Humans generally get ill in some shape or form when they eat anything not as nature intended. Our society shows me that. It is ethically wrong not to exercise the cautionary principle. We can’t know the generational effects, and they may be irreversible. It’s unnecessary, and reckless. Humans are missing the point and not learning from their mistakes. All of the man made foods make people sick. Why would this be any different?
Here’s a better idea.