(NEW YORK) — A Dutch scientist hopes he’ll change minds about the viability of test tube meat when his first genetically engineered hamburger, made from billions of stem cells, is served hot off the grill.
Mark Post, the head of physiology at Maastricht University in the Netherlands, has spent years growing the synthetic hamburger from bovine stem cells, which his team turned into thin strips of muscle tissue before mincing them into a patty.
While the process has taken time and run up considerable expense — the project received $325,000 from an anonymous donor — Post told the New York Times he hoped the cost of cultured meat could come down in the future, making it a viable food source.
After conducting an informal tasting, Post gave the synthetic tissue his seal of approval, telling the Times, it “tastes reasonably good” and that he planned to add just salt and pepper before serving it, perhaps at an event in London this summer.
Post told ABC News in 2011 that he expected meat consumption to double in the next 40 years.
“In my mind, meat consumption is here to stay, and if you want to do that at a higher efficiency than what is currently done by cows and pigs, you have to explore the possibility of doing that in the lab,” he said.
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