It’s the burger that will weigh in at 5oz, has cost £250,000 to produce and could create a slice of history. The world’s first stem cell burger, which has been grown in a laboratory, will be cooked and eaten in London next Monday in an experiment which could lead to artificial meat in supermarkets within 10 years.
The meal has been made from 3,000 strips of artificial beef, each the size of a grain of rice.
Scientists are hoping the development will meet the growing worldwide demand for beef, lamb, pork and chicken. It is the brainchild of Mark Post, a medical physiologist at Maastricht University in the Netherlands.
“Right now, we are using 70 per cent of all our agricultural capacity to grow meat through livestock. You are going to need alternatives,” said Professor Post. “If we don’t do anything, meat will become a luxury food and will become very expensive.
“Eventually, my vision is that you have a limited herd of donor animals which you keep in stock in the world. You basically kill animals and take all the stem cells from them, so you would still need animals for this technology,” the professor told the Independent on Sunday
By 2050, according to the Food and Agriculture Organisation, the world will be eating twice as much meat as that consumed today.