Moments in Meat History Part VI – Meat the Future

Jonathon Markowski
December 29th 2013

By the turn of the century, some people began raising questions about our meat consumption habits. As early as 1894, French chemist Pierre-Eugene Marcellin Berthelot had actually predicted the advent of lab-grown meat. In a press interview, he predicted that by the year 2000 humans would no longer rely on farming to source their food. When asked about the complexity of growing meat, he insisted that it would be only a natural extension of human progress, in the same way that electricity had come to replace the open flame.

Of course, the most famous savant is Winston Churchill. In his 1931 essay for Strand Magazine, he claimed that "we shall escape the absurdity of growing a whole chicken in order to eat the breast or wing, by growing these parts separately under a suitable medium." Churchill wasn't the only one, though. In 1930, the Earl of Birkenhead wrote in his book about the year 2030 that "It will no longer be necessary to go to the extravagant length of rearing a bullock in order to eat a its steak." Predictions of synthetic foods and chemical kitchens would abound through the next few decades.

Image via harryneelam.com (Yousuf Karsh portrait of Churchill)

Share your thoughts and join the technology debate!public: 1

Be the first to comment

What is your view on the coronavirus?


Siri Beerends: I really embrace the idea that viruses can teach us a lesson in modesty. It is necessary that our position as the dominant species on the planet is being challenged. I also agree that it is a mistake to think that we are becoming Gods. But unfortunately, this is actually what is happening now. Corona doesn’t teach us to be modest, it teaches us how we can -as quickly as possible- go back to business as usual: saving our capitalistic economy.

Comment
Already a member? Login.