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World's First Test Tube Burger Gets Good Reviews

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Photo by jslander via the LAist Featured Photos pool on Flickr
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The results of the first taste test of an in-vitro meat burger are in, as is some new info on its backers. Turns out one of the project's main supporters is Google co-founder Sergey Brin. Brin and the team are hoping to create a meat replacement that is as delicious as it is environmentally-friendly.

And it may well end up on your meatless Monday menus soon. The ingredients of the burger, which was sampled in London and cost about $384 million to develop, might not sound as tasty as one of the juicy numbers from the Father's Office. But the critics seem generally pleased, which is nothing short of a miracle, considering the burgers are made from thick strips of pinkish yellow lab-grown tissue mixed with salt, egg powder, and breadcrumbs. Red beet juice and saffron are added to get a blood-red color, similar to how Umami Burger colors their amazing veggie-based Earth Burgers.

Reviewers in their first taste test used descriptors like "close to meat," and noted that "it's not that juicy, but the consistency is perfect." They also described the texture and mouthfeel as being good, but could use some seasoning. What was really missing though is the fat, which we all know makes ground beef taste so good.

It's taken 5 years to create these meatless burgers from stem cells. In 2008, the animal rights activists at PETA launched a competition that said it would give $1 million to anyone who could create and market in vitro meat by June 30, 2012. That deadline came and went, and they extended the competition to 2013.

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It looks like things aren't too far off from coming to completion.

Says the Daily Mail:


Scientist-turned-chef Professor Mark Post produced the burger from 20,000 tiny strips of meat grown from cow stem cells ... He believes it could herald a food revolution and expects artificial meat products appearing in supermarkets in as little as 10 years.

You can watch a live review of the burgers below: