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Lab-grown burger tasted at event in London, said to require ketchup

Sharif Sakr
August 5, 2013
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A couple of tasters, who claim they're unpaid and impartial, are currently chomping their way through some very expensive artificial flesh at a publicity event in London. According to the BBC's science correspondent Pallab Ghosh, who is also at the gathering, the main feedback so far is that the meat -- which is presented as a burger -- isn't as juicy or tasty as the real thing, mainly because it's totally lean. The substance was grown by a team at the University of Maastricht, with a spot of funding from none other than Google visionary Sergey Brin, who believes the technology is on the "cusp of viability" as a solution to animal welfare issues. Lead researcher Prof. Mark Post doesn't seem too disheartened by the tasters' comments, but says he's working to improve flavor. At a current cost of $325,000 per patty, people are going to expect something special regardless of the ethical or ecological arguments -- and some cajun spices probably won't cut it.

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