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Sunday, March 15, 2009 

Meet Shmeat....

Will the test tube flesh be a cuisine to reign supreme? Ugh...i'm not so sure. It's kinda giving me the culinary creeps.

Test-tube meat is also known as in vitro meat, cultured meat, victimless meat, vat-grown meat, hydroponic meat and, finally, shmeat. (Note to self: Be sure to apply for inevitable X Prize to rename this stuff.) Shmeat is grown from a cell culture (hence the in vitro or cultured prefixes), not from a live animal. These harvested cells are taken from an animal, such as a pig, and placed in a “nutrient-rich medium” that mimics blood. Once the cells multiply they are attached to a spongy scaffold or “sheet” (sheet + meat = shmeat) that has been soaked with nutrients and stretched to increase cell size and protein content.

This shmeat could, in theory, be harvested in vast quantities and used in minced meat products: burgers, nuggety things, or potted meat-food products, etc. While scientists (they call themselves “tissue engineers”) admit that growing a pork chop with a bone without a real pig attached is not likely, they also say that affordable, palatable minced shmeat might be available at a grocery store near you within a decade.

So… is this news great? Or gross? If it’s hard for you to tell, I assure you, you are not alone. -
whole life times

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