Today at 8 a.m. EDT, two volunteers tasted the world’s first test-tube burger. The in-vitro burger meat, which was grown in a laboratory from the stem cells of cattle, has taken five years of research and $325,000 to develop. But how exactly do the mad burger scientists grow the meat? “Muscle cells are harvested from a cow. The cells are placed into a donut-shaped dish with a nutrient solution—a mix of sugars, fats, amino acids, and minerals. The cells become muscle tissue and grow into small strands of meat,” reports Business Insider. Around 20,000 meat strands are needed to make one five-ounce burger says Professor Mark Post, who is the mad meat genius behind the test-tube burger. Post is confident that once they develop the technology and in-vitro meat becomes cheaper, it could end the impending food crisis without destroying the environment or harming animals.
Although no animals are harmed during the making of the in-vitro burger, don’t start thinking Post’s cultured beef patties are akin to a Boca Burger. The patty is decidedly non vegetarian, since it’s made from a real animal. Although, we’re sure you’ll sleep soundly knowing the culture cells were taken from organic cows.
So what did the two taste testers think? Did the in-vitro burger stack up to a natural non test-tube patty? And what is the rest of the world’s reaction to this in-vitro burger?
Taste tester #1: Austrian food researcher Hanni Rützler expected the burger to be more juicy, Business Insider reports. She said, “There is quite some intense taste.” She claimed that the texture of the meat was fine, but the flavor was missing. Makes sense, since the hamburger doesn’t yet have fat, which is where most of the flavor comes from.
Taste tester #2: U.S. journalist Josh Schonwald said, “The absence is the fat, there’s a leanness to it, but the bite feels like a conventional hamburger.” Schonwald goes on to say it tastes more like “an animal- protein cake.”
The chef who cooked the burger: The Cornwall chef said it browned up nicely and smelled good while cooking.
Burger creator Mark Post: Post said he would take the leftovers home and let his kids have a taste. Aw.
Jay Rainer: The critic’s response seems to be one of disinterest and apathy: