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It puts technology at the tables of the restaurants artificial meat (Parte I)


"All roads lead to Rome '. It was clear in the Tabula Peutingeriana, an ancient road thirteenth century pseudomapa, all roads lead to Rome. In the same way, It evolves as human ethics, those principles and rights that apply to our species project them to others earthlings.

The discussion of exploitation we put on other beings not from an extreme philosophy or a segment of society in total disconnection with reality. It is an identity issue nested in the depths of our inner self. It is the empathy that incites this moral fire.

Did you discuss if not what beings can interpret pain beyond a reflex caused by its nociceptors? No, unless we wished to avoid cooking live animals may suffer. The reflection of our ethics, the law, It is molded to protect the homeless, and these include and animals, plants, mushrooms…

Perhaps we would turn the stomach but to face the shocking images of real pigs esperpentos recently exposed by the research team Jordi Évole in Spared? Absolutely; and yet this happens and revive the embers of struggle for a decent life for animals in intensive farms held, which it is fought not just for four eco-terrorists unhinged

It is a contest in which most agree: It is unfair in life mistreating a private living being of their liberty and condemned to die to serve food. our food.

Why Silicon Valley says flatly that eating meat is not incompatible with the development and evolution of human ethics. Those who still believe in a utopian future otean the horizon for companies rompeesquemas Californian.

The cradle of computing becomes Petri dish meat

Scourged the summer heat when the emerging company Memphis Meats He could close a deal with several angel investors in the amount of 17 millions of dollars. Among them, people like Richard Branson or Bill Gates.

The idea? Regardless obtaining meat of animals.

The technology is there. Over the past two decades knowledge about once the inscrutable secrets revealed stem cells have infinite potential. In consecuense, it is not unreasonable to think of the ability to stop the slaughter of animals for the purpose of getting meat and move on to cultivate this product.

Referring to plans Memphis Meats, Google co-founder, Sergey Brin, confessed that “like monitor technological opportunities where technology touches viability, and if they can succeed, They have the potential to be truly transformative”.

Have successfully completed several pilot tests over the industrial future of this laboratory meat is still hazy.

Last year chef Thomas Bowman preparing a nuggets Chicken at the request of the company alternative protein JUST (formerly Hampton Creek). Of course, I could not be a normal dish; while dinner is served in the backyard chef, the chicken was still alive.

No, This is not some grisly vivisection. The chicken, affectionately dubbed Ian, busy scurrying around the table, unscathed, while diners were eager for taste a kind of synthetic chicken.

Thanks to the removing some cells from marrow Chicken, JUST he had managed to replicate muscle meat chicken in a culture in vitro.

The price is the problem. The first flirtation with meat crops took place in 2013 when the scientist Dutch Mark Post got enough muscle cells to simulate a hamburger.

The exorbitant price 250.000 euros, production cost of the gastronomic chimera, It has been reduced now to 65 € / kg according to estimates Mark Post, who from 2013 It has sought to cut costs in view of the process to market the product through its company based in the Netherlands, Nosnaat.

Although the amount is still ten times higher than the traditional meat, experts in the field predict that by the end of this year the artificial meat could reach our supermarket shelves exclusively and limited.

The product, very expensive yet, It would aim to those consumers committed to sustainability and ethics in food.

The contenders in the battle for hegemony of the new meat industry

JUST, MosaMeat Meat and Memphis are not the only companies engaged in obtaining affordable meat laboratory.

These three start-ups They are joined by many others scattered around the world, though certainly it concentrated around Silicon Valley.

gelcen is is a biotechnology company founded in San Leandro (California). Its main focus is the production of animal gelatin. This product expensive preparation is used not only in the food industry (as a basis for sweets or gelling additive), also it serves for the production of plastic compounds, specialized products for photography and a plethora of unlikely applications (human replicas used in ballistic tests are made with gelatin).

Alex Lorestaini, co-founder, is satisfied to look back and see how the longing for your partner, Nick Ouzounov, who he was dissatisfied with gelatin substitutes vegans old, They were answered. “We gelatin from scratch programming microbes to build it for us”, He communicated in an interview Latest Vegan News.

Ouzounov is not the only Ledo with the result. critics The New Omnivore They informed their readers about the benefits of the new: “Its special versatility, stability, more predictable quality, and the fact that conventional gelatin is a processed product of a extremely wasteful livestock system, It makes Gelzen gelatin is another brilliant progress towards non-animal food production”.

Perfect Foods is another of competitors. This initiative is in California Berkeley. Its aim is removing animals equation in the dairy industry. Los bioingenieros Perumal Gandhi y Ryan Pandya, who founded the company Muufri in 2014 now renamed, are the minds behind the project.

Although its initial goal of selling items already in 2015 He not failed to materialize, this has not prevented them to continue developing its technology: a yeast genetically modified to produce milk proteins. During his journey, CEO has reinforced its vision.

In a recent statement indicated that “Milk proteins are the source of nutrition highest quality in the world“, a world that “for 2050, It is expected to increase its demand for protein by 80%”. He is asking rhetorically ended “how we will produce enough nutritious protein to feed a global population of 9,5 billion people while preserving the planet”.

Is clear the bet Perfect Foods. And whites are the bet of another partner in this campaign for growing food in vitro. Clara Foods It is another emerging company in the sector. Located in San Francisco, society promoted by New Harvest (a fund catalyst such proposals) It has the albumen in the spotlight.

To the dismay of the executive director of Just, involved in a fraudulent funding scandal during the step of Hampton Creek related eggs, after having raised a record 1,4 millions of euros and have a product prototyping (clear with which some tasty baked meringues), Foods Clara is close to fulfilling his purpose: chickens get their pestilential overcrowded cages.

Egg production takes the cake in terms of hellish conditions. Poultry barely have space, peaks are removed so as not to injure each other, laying cycles are unnatural and animals are monstrous (selective breeding has made them inefficient machines lay eggs with brittle bone).

Clara albumen Foods is also produced by a yeast. This fungus is reprogrammed by inserting genes capable of synthesizing the twelve proteins contained naturally in egg white. Yeast consumes sugar and generates the viscous liquid precious.

SuperMeat, another pioneer in the sector, It is a little further. Specifically, in Tel Aviv (Israel). Getting thanks to funds crowdsourcing, this company began his career with the support of the people who donated on Indiegogo. Total they joined 220.000 euros. The main task of the company is create artificial meat, specifically chicken as it is kosher (although at high levels, Jewish rabbis still discussing the theological implications of this technology).

The alternative raised by Israeli officials; Ido Savir, Koby Barak y Shir Friedman, looks like a promising future, China has bought the company 300 millions of dollars. The Asian giant's strategic move has been met with praise by the most concerned about emissions of greenhouse gases and climate change industry.

further, The news has attracted renewed interest and attention to the technology behind the meat laboratory cultures.

Far from composing the entire scenario, these start-ups with only some of the major players in a complicated game of chess business. The list could continue Modern Meadow, Finless Foods, Beyond Meat, Lyrical Foods, SunFed Foods, Miyoko's Kitchen ...

The beef sector, up in arms

They also help many investment funds such as The Good Food Institute, New Crop Capital and the aforementioned New Harvest. Notably PETA, often denounced by their indefensible positions, inject large amounts of aid in test tubes these companies that ensure both our future and for the animals.

On the other hand, the opposition and prepares contingency plan. Given the relentless approach of growing meat the threshold of economic viability, he lobby of US cattle industry (DRY) moves his son in Washington to safeguard their right to call 'meat’ exclusively to that from animals slaughtered.

The fifteen-page request has been processed at USDA. And nobody is willing to give an inch on this business moving 550 billion euros annually.

Tell that to JUST, which he suffered in the flesh the opinion of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) emboldened by a food giant (Unilever) according to which should contain egg mayonnaise to be called so. Luckily for Josh Tetrick, Executive Director start-up, everything was temporary and product Just Mayo can be found everywhere.

It has been agreed to call this scenario the Revolution alternative proteins; what, according to Joe Fassler, editor senior from New Food Economy, “approaches, and faster than we think”.

About the Author

Industrial Engineer, writer and translator. When your hands do not dance on the keyboard, wielding a butterfly net in some hidden valley. Owner Geometra Conservancy, Green initiative for nature conservation and biodiversity protection. Written contributions deal with technological innovations, digital marketing, gastronomy, sustainability and biodiversity.


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