ESF Exploratory Workshop: In vitro meat: Possibilities and Realities for An Alternative Future Meat Source has been initiated by Chalmers and begins on 31 August.
You are one of the principal researchers. What is your role?
“Obviously my role relates to the ethical issues. How can you get people to accept meat grown in bioreactors? There are many who will perceive it as ‘unnatural’.”
It sounds pretty unnatural; are there ethical concerns?
“Actually, there are few ethical problems associated with the cultivation of animal muscle cells compared to those problems that industrial farming causes. From an animal welfare aspect, it is positive as well and it will create significant environmental benefits lending itself to future large-scale cultivation of in vitro meat for consumption.“Rather, the problem stems from the fact that the researchers find themselves entwined in discussions on the cultivation of stem cells. So far the most stem cells available are derived from humans and mice. Meat for consumption should be of a different kind. In addition, the debate for and against genetic modification is on-going.”
“And it will be exciting when issues of meat production have been brought to a concrete political level. Presently, Swedish political parties retain slightly varying stances.
You have invited thirty researchers to a four-day workshop. What's on the program?
“The current research on in vitro meat is on a small scale, fragmented and sparsely funded. Researchers from different disciplines need to meet in order to sum up the situation and discuss the various ways forward. The major issues concern; the technology related to cultivation, various ideas on how to obtain stem cells and how to obtain nutrients from plants to then trigger cells to grow. Rapid growth and profitability is a prerequisite for large-scale cultivation.
Footnote: The concept of in vitro meat gained momentum during the 90s, in conjunction with the emergence of tissue engineering research (tissue culture) for medical purposes. Meat production places great demands geographically and time wise and generates large amounts of greenhouse gases.
The need for meat grows faster than the world’s population grows, so the better the financial situation a country has the more meat people tend to eat. Up to this point, no-one has managed to produce meat for public consumption, however recent reports indicate that it may happen in the near future.
LiU and Vice-Chancellor Helen Dannetun hosted an anniversary conference filled with science, new learning, good times and lots of interaction.
Alumni of the Year Mihai Aldén and Kajsa Andersson spoke about their choice of career paths and received diplomas.
The Wildlife Security project has further raised its profile, as LiU becomes a member of the Clinton Global Initiative.
It’s the cracks in international climate negotiations that interest Mathias Fridahl, researcher at the Department of Thematic Studies - Environmental Change.
Right now, Professor of Political Science Peo Hansen is up to his ears in national and international media, who want to interview him.
Charlotte Lundgren, communications researcher at the Department of Culture and Communication, has set up cameras to study the interaction among trainers, elite riders and horses.
Throngs of people at the exhibition, unexpected meetings, and a deliriously happy audience in front of the stage. This year’s Kalas really was a smash.
People who suffer from alcohol and drug addiction are seldom given up-to-date treatment in the healthcare system, Markus Heilig, psychiatrist and world renowned addiction researcher, writes in a new book.
Alexandra A. Holmström has a lot on her plate, with New Students’ Day on 2 September.
Last updated: 2015-11-26