Home Tech The Murky Campaign to Discredit Lab-Grown Meat

The Murky Campaign to Discredit Lab-Grown Meat

by Elijah
0 comment

Almy says the suggestion that taking immortalized cells could be linked to cancer in humans was “so ridiculous as to be laughable.” “So few people have raised meat or have access to it that it seems like these things being raised create more fear than anything,” she says. “It feels like consumers’ unfamiliarity with this product is being taken advantage of.”

The CEW website and advertising campaign are reminiscent of a similar campaign targeting the plant-based meat industry by the Center for Consumer Freedom (CCF), another US campaign group. One ad the CCF published during the 2020 Super Bowl featured a mock spelling bee in which students had difficulty spelling some of the ingredients found in plant-based burgers. “You might need a PhD to understand what’s in synthetic meat,” the voiceover said. Founded by Rick Berman in 1996, the CCF has a long history of campaigning against plant-based meat. animal welfare charitiesAnd prohibit legislation the sale of animal fur.

CEW’s latest campaign also criticizes the environmental performance of cultured meat, citing a preprint study that found cultured meat could have 25 times the carbon footprint of regular beef. The research was widely picked up in the press and drew criticism from the Good Food Institute for describing unlikely production methods that rely on very high levels of ingredient purification. Other studies have shown that cultured meat could have much lower CO2 emissions than meat conventional beefAlthough it’s difficult to know exactly how emissions-intensive production will be until manufacturers scale up production.

Bryant says the CEW website appears to deliberately select material that portrays cultured meat in the worst possible light. “There is information being presented that is causing more concern than is warranted,” he said.

In response to the criticisms raised in this article, Hubbard says that “CEW simply presents existing research, expert opinion in the field, and a common sense perspective to Americans so they can make up their own minds. Consumers benefit from a robust debate.”

The future of the emerging industry is still highly uncertain, with most work in cultured meat being carried out by privately funded startups. However, there has been some government support for the technology. In 2021, the U.S. Department of Agriculture gave a $10 million grant to Tufts University in Boston for work on cultured meat, and there have also been government grants in the Britain, Israeland the The Netherlands.

But some lawmakers oppose cultured meat. In November 2023, the Italian parliament passed a law banning the use, sale, import and export of feed “from cell cultures or tissues derived from vertebrate animals.” In Arizona, a bill was introduced in January by state Rep. Quang Nguyen to ban the labeling of cultured animal cells as “meat,” while legislation has also been proposed that would limit the labeling or sale of cultured meat. Florida and Texas.

Almy says she hopes CEW’s campaign doesn’t hinder the ability of customers in the U.S. and abroad to eventually try cultured meat and decide for themselves whether to buy it again. “This is about consumer choice and innovation. We are very excited to see cultured meat come to market and we hope that once consumers get the chance to try it, they will discover that it fits into their lives, that it is delicious and affordable.”

Updated 1/19/2024 6:00 PM GMT: The spelling of Jessica Almy’s name has been corrected.

You may also like