read the full text...

The New Yorker ran a story this week on lab-grown meat, and has a compelling audio interview with Michael Specter about the strong arguments in favor of lab meat and overcoming initial reactions to the concept. Listen to the mp3 here, or right-click here to download.

Lab grown meat can be free of antibiotics, pesticides and hormones, and addresses the environmental and ethical issues that make farming living animals problematic. It can more efficiently, more ecologically, and less cruelly provide protein to the one billion people who go to bed hungry every night, who don’t get protein. It would seem that what we are most repulsed with is the idea of meat growing in a laboratory. It is that dirty word – engineered – and we picture a test tube, mad scientists, chemicals bubbling. However, the reality of industrial farming can be far scarier, as Specter says. “You know what you’re getting if you eat a lab burger – you don’t know what you’re getting if you eat a Perdue chicken… It is initially, I think, a Ghoulish prospect – there are some other ghoulish prosects though – and one is the way we kill the animals we eat. We eat billions of them, literally billions of them a year. And many of them are just born to be killed and are treated just repulsively their entire lives.”

What are your thoughts on lab grown meat? Please comment below.