The Next Agricultural Revolution: Emerging Production Methods for Meat Alternatives

Sunday, February 19, 2012: 3:00 PM-4:30 PM
Room 110 (VCC West Building)
Since the inception of the Green Revolution, the global population has tripled to 7 billion. Today, 1 billion people experience persistent hunger. Increased grain use for livestock and biofuel production has driven food prices to record levels. Global meat consumption is expected to nearly double by 2050. Livestock operations presently occupy 30 percent of Earth's arable land, are attributable to 18 percent of anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions, threaten biodiversity, and are a reservoir for emerging infectious diseases. How can a global society reduce hunger while sustainably providing food for a projected 9 billion people by 2050? Emerging, animal-independent methods for production of meat alternatives include plant-based meat analog preparation and skeletal muscle hydroponically cultivated as edible meat. Plant-based meat analog preparation uses innovative vegetable protein extrusion techniques to achieve a meat-like texture. Skeletal muscle is cultivated using serum-free growth media to direct development by stem cells of popular edible species. Mechanical conditioning of engineered tissues promotes skeletal muscle maturation to suit consumer taste. Both strategies promise to increase production efficiency while mitigating environmental impacts associated with conventional meat production systems. An interdisciplinary panel of experts will discuss the strategies and prospects for commercial production of meat alternatives in the next agricultural revolution.
Nicholas J. Genovese, University of Missouri
Vladimir Mironov, Medical University of South Carolina
Nicholas J. Genovese, University of Missouri
Patrick O. Brown, Stanford University School of Medicine
Global Meat Consumption and Sustainable Agriculture: Practice, Price, and Policy
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