Religious freedom, animal welfare, and Impossible Burgers

Yesterday my google feed alerted me to a story from Europe:

A Belgian ban on the Muslim and Jewish ways of ritually slaughtering animals went into effect on New Year’s Day, part of a clash across Europe over the balance between animal welfare and religious freedom.

With both animal welfare advocates and right-wing nationalists pushing to ban ritual slaughter, religious minorities in Belgium and other countries fear that they are the targets of bigotry under the guise of animal protection.

This is tough one – because each side to the debate has good arguments. The case is going to the Belgium Constitutional Court but I suspect we ‘re going to see more and more of this over time.

There is, however, a technological solution to this problem.

According to its developers, plant-based “meat” is not a niche and the current reliance on animal protein is not sustainable.

So says Impossible Foods, whose mission is to eliminate the need for animals in the food system by 2035.

And while those who produce and consume red meat disagree that animal proteins need to be eliminated, Impossible Foods has created the Impossible Burger, a plant-based protein that looks, tastes and smells like meat.

I was introduced to the notion of the Impossible Burger by my good friend Jeff Stier.  Unlike Jeff I haven’t had the opportunity to actually eat an Impossible Burger, but he has and he argues that they are really good compared to traditional burgers. Not yet exactly the same, but well on the way.

The story behind the Impossible Burger is very interesting:

In 2009, Brown decided to devote an 18-month sabbatical to eliminating industrial meat production, which he determined at the time to be the world’s largest environmental problem. A staggering one-third of the land on Earth is used to raise livestock and their food. The Midwest is a giant feed trough. Reducing meat consumption, Brown figured, would free up vast amounts of land and water, would greatly mitigate climate change, would alleviate the suffering of billions of animals, would eliminate mountains of chemical fertilizer, and would make people healthier. It seemed like a no-brainer.

Such a no-brainer, in fact, that at first Brown assumed all he had to do was a little education. “I started doing the typical misguided academic approach to the problem,” he told me. He organized an A-list 2010 National Research Council workshop in Washington called “The Role of Animal Agriculture in a Sustainable 21st Century Global Food System,” which caused not a ripple. Not long after, he determined that the only real way to impact meat production would be to beat it in the free market. “All you have to do is make a product that the current consumers of meat and dairy prefer to what they’re getting now,” he said. “It’s easier to change people’s behavior than to change their minds.”

By the end of his sabbatical, Brown, who has been a vegetarian since the 1970s and a vegan since 2004, had distilled his challenge: He would re-create meat, but with plants. All meat production is environmentally ruinous, but beef is by far the worst offender, so for his initial target, Brown chose ground beef, which accounts for 60 percent of all beef consumption.

Easier to change behaviour than change people’s minds? What a revolutionary concept. Provide people with a substitute not a lecture on morality.  Wow.

So here is the thing – you don’t have to care about the environmental impact of farming, or animal welfare* to consume the product. So long as you get just as much enjoyment from eating an Impossible Burger as you would a regular burger this product becomes a win-win for everyone. The free market at work.

*Right now the ban on halal and kosher meat is simple anti-religious bigotry some dressed up as concern for animal welfare (others are just bigots). First they came for the religious minorities. Let’s not kid ourselves that this is where it’ll stop.  Having said that, the fact of matter is that we kill fellow sentient beings that feel pain and suffering for our own sustenance and enjoyment.

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93 Responses to Religious freedom, animal welfare, and Impossible Burgers

  1. Nob

    The meme that grazing land could be used instead for growing veg is pure low grade bullshit.

  2. Confused Old Misfit

    Having said that, the fact of matter is that we kill fellow sentient beings that feel pain and suffering for our own sustenance and enjoyment.

    Someone needs to get a little experience in raising livestock.

  3. Nob

    They care about farm animals so much they want to make them extinct?

  4. Plant based meat is still made from the food that my food eats. All this proves is that Vegans’ brains eventually just turn into vegetable matter.

  5. jupes

    Provide people with a substitute not a lecture on morality. Wow.

    Sounds like Sinc is after an invite to the next Bahnisch bbq.

  6. Infidel Tiger

    You’d have to suck some serious tofu based sausage to believe this crap.

  7. dover_beach

    Having said that, the fact of matter is that we kill fellow sentient beings that feel pain and suffering for our own sustenance and enjoyment.

    And?

  8. Stimpson J. Cat

    Think of all the money saved from having to pay for kosher and halal certification.
    Consumers win again!!!

  9. dover_beach

    There is, however, a technological solution to this problem.

    No, people slaughtering meat for festivals are going to want to eat meat, not a plant-based substitute.

  10. Bruce of Newcastle

    The muscle tissue in Griffin comes from select wheat and potato proteins, while the connective tissue comes from soybeans and wheat gluten.

    He’s eating soy babies and wheat babies?

    The fat is coconut oil, emulsified so that it mimics flecks of beef tallow, which partially melt during cooking.

    And coconut babies. The monster! I bet he’s breathing out evil CO2 with every breath too.

  11. Infidel Tiger

    Soy is one of the most dangerous products on earth.

    Any man consuming it will jot be a man for very long.

  12. Stimpson J. Cat

    I don’t know if I would go for Bug Burgers.

    Seaweed Burgers should be the go.

    Get the Japs on the case.

  13. A Lurker

    And while those who produce and consume red meat disagree that animal proteins need to be eliminated, Impossible Foods has created the Impossible Burger, a plant-based protein that looks, tastes and smells like meat.

    Next step, Soylent Green. After all, many lunatic Leftists have been indoctrinated to believe that humans are a disease upon the planet and that humanity should be eliminated or culled.

    What a pity that people who think like this don’t ever start with culling themselves…

    p.s. The next extended cold period (the chill of which I believe is breathing down our necks) will mean a greatly reduced growing season, increased plant blight and diseases, reduced yield, crop failures, and subsequent famines.

    People will be wishing for a nice fat steak on their plate.

  14. Infidel Tiger

    According to its developers, plant-based “meat” is not a niche and the current reliance on animal protein is not sustainable.

    You begin with a lie and go on from there.

    A tried and true practice.

  15. Was it Homer Simpson who said, “If God did not want us to eat animals, why did he make them out of meat?

  16. dover_beach

    Religious freedom, animal welfare

    This is absurd. From what I know of the method used in kosher animal is more or less unconsciousness instantly.

  17. jock

    Do these people know what happens when animals are killed by their predators in the wild? Are we going to stop eagles from hunting mice and rabbits? Oh the inhumanity of the eagles!!! I dont have a problem with either halal or kosher. What i have a problem with is being sold halal when i dont want it.

  18. JohnA

    the fact of matter is that we kill fellow sentient beings that feel pain and suffering for our own sustenance and enjoyment.

    A ridiculous statement worthy of only a Peter Singer.

    Within an evolutionary paradigm (to which I do not subscribe), humanity has clambered to the top of the tree and such statements have no moral force.

    Within a Christian, creation paradigm (to which I DO subscribe), God has created a world with different levels of existence from rocks to humans with souls and spirits, and has given humanity a mandate to feed from the rest of the created order but with moral restraints against wanton waste, gluttony, cruelty, destruction etc.

  19. dover_beach

    kosher slaughter, sorry

  20. Infidel Tiger

    In the not too distant future you will be able to have sex and marry animals but not eat them.

  21. JC

    Where’s the problem here? Someone comes up with a solution by way of a substitute and if it popular it will reduce animal slaughter and people here whine about it. What happened to the idea of choice? No one’s being compelled to eat this stuff.

  22. Tim Neilson

    Do these people know what happens when animals are killed by their predators in the wild? Are we going to stop eagles from hunting mice and rabbits? Oh the inhumanity of the eagles!!! I dont have a problem with either halal or kosher. What i have a problem with is being sold halal when i dont want it.

    Yes. Complaining about humans killing and eating animals is essentially complaining about evolution.
    And as for halal, if animal rights groups were serious they’d be advocating for people to buy “halal-free” meat like we have free range eggs.
    (A friend told me that halal is more or less what happens on farms when animals are killed for rations, but what’s done by necessity isn’t the same as what’s foisted on the general public because multiculti.)

  23. Singleton Engineer

    My cattle are vegetarians… vegans, even.

    But they taste like beef.

    Job done?

  24. Tim Neilson

    In the not too distant future you will be able to have sex and marry animals but not eat them.

    Until we get the interspecies version of Christina Blasey Ford.

  25. The only animals with rights are those that are further up the food chain than me.

    Eat or be eaten.

  26. JC

    Where’s the problem here? Where’s the compulsion? Why the whining?

  27. Don’t forget the meat from stem cells in a bioreactor. Can be grown in a factory district with a lot less space and inputs. The main issue (aside from price) is that it is hard to grow both muscle and fat in the same culture. Without the fat the stem cell meat is really lean, lacks flavour and is a bit difficult to fry (kinda similar to kangaroo sausages).

  28. Fred

    Having said that, the fact of matter is that we kill fellow sentient beings that feel pain and suffering for our own sustenance and enjoyment.

    When animals stop consuming other animals for sustenance, I will too.

    Start chomping on that seaweed, sharks.

  29. Stimpson J. Cat

    Look we have free markets just buy abroad guys.

  30. dover_beach

    Where’s the problem here? Where’s the compulsion? Why the whining?

    1. Belgian ban.
    2. The whole tendency of the animal welfare/ food miles line is to shrink the meat market and to make meat expensive and the preserve of the wealthy or those with or near those with the ability to raise livestock. Remember, the aim of Brown and the Impossible Burger is not to provide an alternative to meat, it is a plan that aims to “eliminat[e] industrial meat production.”

  31. Helen

    Sheep and goats becasue of artery placement succomb very quickly, cattle and camels not so much. But just because we have always done – does it follow we always should?

    Those who kill sheep for rations would certainly use the bleeding and no stunning method, our rations are shot and then bled out but they are cows, and our animals are consigned to abbs where there is stunning before bleeding – in muslim countries, too, so I dont know what the screeching is about in Belgium, a Christian country. Get over it guys.

    As for saving the land and water – for what? Most of the land that runs cattle and sheep is rangleland which unsuitable to grow crops on – think north of the Goyder line but on a global scale. if you take the cows and sheep away, you will just have a huge sink of unmanaged weeds, ferals and wildfires – who is goning to pay for that management?

  32. Suburban Boy

    A world without actual meat? Bad news for the Peterson family.

  33. Stimpson J. Cat

    Hands up who would rather just have their throat cut instead of a Bolt through the brain first then throat cut?
    Don’t be shy tough guys.
    😁

  34. JC

    If people move to the substitute without compulsion then there’s no problem, DB.

  35. Infidel Tiger

    The classic case of a complex solution to a non-problem.

  36. C.L.

    A staggering one-third of the land on Earth is used to raise livestock and their food. The Midwest is a giant feed trough.

    So?

    Reducing meat consumption … would free up vast amounts of land and water …

    Free it for what?

  37. Infidel Tiger

    The last time we saw libertarians this excited over an imaginary problem they were wanking themselves red raw about the market efficiency of a carbon tax.

  38. jupes

    A staggering one-third of the land on Earth is used to raise livestock and their food.

    I’m calling bullshit on that stat. No. Utter bollocks is more like it.

  39. None

    His facts are wrong concerning the amount of land used for raising livestock for human consumption and he has not done the maths on how much land will be used to generate the plant matter needed to replace meat. Your friend it’s just an ideological idiot.
    I agree that the Belgian ban is nothing more than religious bigotry under the guise of animal welfarism – because you see the animal welfare junkies have no problems with lions ripping up willdeaees, sharks devouring seals and crocs eating everything alive and God knows what else: it’s all f****** b*******. Livestock which is specifically raised for human consumption is protected from all wild predators and in Western countries at least is slaughtered without pain. And seriously all these non religious types should not be worried about pain because it’s a dog eat dog world at Evolution Central and you’re not going to remember the pain when you’re f****** dead you stupid morons. This sort of stuff should be mocked and ridiculed and not even considered seriously. That you even do is what gives it an in to poison the world.

  40. John Constantine

    Lab grown meat currently requires foetal stem cells from aborted calves, and we can see the demand for pregnant cows to be bought in the marketplace and slaughtered.

    The blood from the aborted calf is said to be more valuable than the cow meat.

  41. dover_beach

    If people move to the substitute without compulsion then there’s no problem, DB.

    Sure, but I hate the plan to eliminate meat production. One thing is for sure, they should not be allowed to call whatever it is they’re marketing ‘meat’.

  42. A Lurker

    You have this…

    Eating meat and cooking food made us human, the studies suggest, enabling the brains of our prehuman ancestors to grow dramatically over a period of a few million years.

    Although this isn’t the first such assertion from archaeologists and evolutionary biologists, the new studies demonstrate, respectively, that it would have been biologically implausible for humans to evolve such a large brain on a raw, vegan diet and that meat-eating was a crucial element of human evolution at least 1 million years before the dawn of humankind.

    Then you have this…

    A study published earlier this year confirmed what scientists have long believed to be the case – the human brain is shrinking. For more than 7 million years the hominid brain has grown increasingly bigger, almost tripling in size. But for the last 10,000 years, the human brain has been shrinking at an alarming rate and no one really knows why. New research has attempted to answer this question by examining size changes in specific regions of the brain.

    The study published in the American Journal of Physical Anthropology was carried out by a team of Chinese researchers who looked at over 500 endocasts from the past 7,000 years. Endocasts are moulds of brains created from the imprints on the inside of the skull. They are an invaluable resource when studying human evolution, allowing us to track how our brain has evolved over the past few million years. The results confirmed what has long been suspected – our brains are getting smaller.

    So, what would be the consequences of no meat eating at all?

    Perhaps a backward step in evolution.

  43. JohnA

    C.L. #2902533, posted on January 9, 2019, at 4:23 pm

    A staggering one-third of the land on Earth is used to raise livestock and their food. The Midwest is a giant feed trough.

    So?

    Reducing meat consumption … would free up vast amounts of land and water …

    Free it for what?

    If the statistic was worth anything (which I doubt), the land would be required to raise vegetable-type crops for human consumption.

    So no saving in land use. Just part of the 73% of statistics made up on the run.
    🙂

  44. C.L.

    So here is the thing – you don’t have to care about the environmental impact of farming, or animal welfare* to consume the product. So long as you get just as much enjoyment from eating an Impossible Burger as you would a regular burger this product becomes a win-win for everyone. The free market at work.

    This is always – and I mean always – where libertarians are dumb.
    The left’s salesmanship propaganda is always redolent with notions of choice and consumer sovereignty when they’re pushing a new solution to a non-existent problem; that is to say, when they’re in the weak position. When this product emerges from Frankenstein’s lab for the final time, it will 1) be histrionically praised for its satisfying realism – indeed, its superiority! – by vegetarian lunatics; 2) be foisted on schools and state-financed institutions; 3) be protected by advertising bans on meat; 4) be subsidised by the state; 5) lead to “growing calls” for meat production to be gradually banned. Also, expect meat lovers to be derided as ‘meat denialists.’

    None of the above is meant to be comedic. Every one of those things would happen.

  45. John Constantine

    The endpoint is to run rebirthing plants down at the sewerage works and feed the proles rations of fungus and algae derived medicated sludge.

    Having people free to hunt and gather makes Tyranny more difficult.

    JC already would prefer to spend his life dining out and ordering in takeaway that is rarely more than one percent bespoke spittle courtesy of the serving classes, so there is a big market that isn’t fussed about how the raw ingredients come about.

    The unswerving compliance with Paris means destocking the animal agriculture of the west, herding the proles into vertical dogbox slums and rewilding the great outdoors.

    No choice about it.

    Comrades.

  46. John Constantine

    Fragility fractures from lack of lean muscle mass kills mass millions of western women.

    The lean muscle mass helps balance, avoids falls, absorbs a small part of the shock of impact if you do fall, and helps hold the skeleton together instead of having hipbones shatter out of sockets.

    Once only centrally planned factories produce rations, it is down to:

    “You no capitulate, you no eat”.

  47. dover_beach

    None of the above is meant to be comedic. Every one of those things would happen.

    Because it has happened. Just substitute the pretend cloth shopping bag we are forced to use now for whatever it is they are offering. It begins as choice and ends as complusion. Wake the hell up.

  48. struth

    Right now the ban on halal and kosher meat is simple anti-religious bigotry some dressed up as concern for animal welfare (others are just bigots). First they came for the religious minorities. Let’s not kid ourselves that this is where it’ll stop. Having said that, the fact of matter is that we kill fellow sentient beings that feel pain and suffering for our own sustenance and enjoyment

    It’s a Christian country.

    Non Christian countries ban Christian slaughtered meats.

    Get with the program.
    Why let Mussies torture animals for no good reason.
    Go to an Islamic country and do it.

    Repeat after me.
    Europe is Christian.
    It’s laws are based on Christianity, just like ours.

    What we feel is barbaric as Christians in a Christian country, we will decide to ban, if we democratically feel the need.
    Now, going after FGM practices, is that alright with you Sinc, or to each his own, in your groovy Libertarian world?

  49. lotocoti

    would alleviate the suffering of billions of animals

    Eat them. Don’t eat them.
    Either way there’s a captured bolt in their future.

  50. jupes

    would alleviate the suffering of billions of animals

    As opposed to ‘alleviating’ the existence of the trillions of animals that only exist so we can eat them.

    Would lamby prefer to enjoy a nice life getting fattened up then killed or not live at all?

  51. struth

    So just to be clear.
    Against.
    Halal and unnecessary trauma inflicted on the animal being slain.
    For .
    Animals being slain for food.

    Yummy.

  52. Biota

    No problem with a free choice market and someone offering meat substitutes, they’ve been around for years. But wait for the compulsion and subsidies to get this to a mass scale, just like ruinable power.

  53. struth

    Not living at all.
    Living but dying a horrible death naturally.
    Living but dying a quick horrible death.
    Living but dying a tortured prolonged killing for the sake of backward religious peasants.

    It’s only one of these options.
    Insulated wackademics may think animals and people live forever, but those in farming at least, and every other walk of life, know this isn’t the case.

    By the way, greenies, better get yer tits out and hope for the best, if you like milk in yer coffee.
    Animals supply more than just meat.
    Just in case you needed that explained to you as well.
    FMD.

  54. struth

    Should we also point out how animal shit and piss is used to fertilise those great fields of mung beans you wankers are banging on about.

    What’s the Venezuelans going to burn to cook their mungbeans while they enjoy socialism?

  55. Helen

    What’s the Venezuelans going to burn to cook their mungbeans while they enjoy socialism?

    They have alrady eaten all the cats and dogs.

  56. John Constantine

    https://www.gizmodo.com.au/2019/01/the-new-impossible-burger-is-stupid-delicious/

    Of course, burger patties and chicken nuggets and all meat products that have the meat mulched up and chemically treated are not meat in the sense that a barbie full of grassfed paddock raised chops are meat.

    I love cheeseburgers, and ate and enjoyed them twice last year.

    Eating meat that you can identify which part of the animal it was cut from is a long term preferrable diet.

  57. JC

    JC already would prefer to spend his life dining out and ordering in takeaway that is rarely more than one percent bespoke spittle courtesy of the serving classes, so there is a big market that isn’t fussed about how the raw ingredients come about.

    I don’t like the idea of killing animals so I can eat their flesh, John C. I have a tiny ping of guilt and remorse every time I do. I still continue eating it though. Bet there are lots of people like me.
    If a nice substitute comes along and is a decent sideways move for meat, I would swap over. I don’t care if others don’t share these feelings … remorse or guilt and wouldn’t push my views on other people.

    Having said that, I would oppose anyone compelling people to swap over.

  58. JC

    Dover

    You realize you’re pushing a version of the precautionary principle, right?

  59. dover_beach

    It’s a Christian country.

    Belgium euthanasias the mentally ill and sick. It has long ceased being Christian.

  60. C.L.

    *Right now the ban on halal and kosher meat is simple anti-religious bigotry dressed up as concern for animal welfare (others are just bigots). First they came for the religious minorities. Let’s not kid ourselves that this is where it’ll stop.

    For the past month or so, Glenn Reynolds has been pointing to the Democrat Party’s interrogation of Brian C. Buescher, an Omaha-based lawyer nominated by President Trump to sit on the District Court of Nebraska. Buescher is a Catholic and member of the Knights of Columbus.

    Senatorial attacks on the Knights of Columbus should alarm J-ws who care about religious freedom, but so far, crickets from the organized J-wish world. It’s as if the “organized J-wish world” is just a bunch of Democratic Party super-PACs.

    A big problem for J-ws as a lobby is that they have spent so many years in the pocket of left-wing parties in the US, Europe and Australia that the new rightists (unlike many of the older ones) see them – not without ample cause – as a cultural enemy.

  61. Anthony

    John Constantine
    #2902544, posted on January 9, 2019 at 4:33 pm

    Lab grown meat currently requires foetal stem cells from aborted calves, and we can see the demand for pregnant cows to be bought in the marketplace and slaughtered.

    The blood from the aborted calf is said to be more valuable than the cow meat.

    Stem cells can self replicate, in theory embryonic ones can go forever.

    In my lab and just about everywhere for decades we use 10% fetal calf serum to grow mouse and human cells in vitro.

  62. Behind Enemy Lines

    *Right now the ban on halal and kosher meat is simple anti-religious bigotry some dressed up as concern for animal welfare (others are just bigots). First they came for the religious minorities. Let’s not kid ourselves that this is where it’ll stop.

    So, the Reductio ad Hitlerum argument.

    Count me in with the bigots.

    Every decent sentient person knows that it is humane, sustainable and moral to ban halal and kosher products, as well as infant circumcision while we’re at it. And if we consequently miss out on tasty ethnic food, child brides, colourful fêtes from foreign minorities, multiple wives on welfare, exciting new foreign traditions, no-go suburbs, the rich pageant of new ALP perma-voters from exotic climes, and the mutilation of kiddies’ genitals . . . ah well, such is life. I am willing to suffer it.

    And I am confident that in this Age Of Tolerance, your religious minorities will band together with me in pursuit of commonsense decency and justice.

    After all, being an Australian means giving up your own culture. Right?

  63. Iampeter

    What the animal welfare crowd don’t realize is that we only have so many cows, pigs, chickens, etc BECAUSE we farm and eat them. If they get their way, what do they think is going to happen to all these animals?
    Just like environmentalist policies lead to environmental disasters, so animal welfare policies, if they ever succeed properly, will lead to a disaster for animals.

    Also, notice how they aren’t worried about tigers or wolves eating meat, no concern for animal pain and suffering in that context? Only with humans this becomes an issue.
    This is a hint to the true motivation of the “animal welfare” movement. They are anti-human.

  64. Michael

    I’m loving everything Struth has to say, and am just picturing 33% of the planet covered in solar panels and windmills instead of livestock and crops, to power all our “new meat” processing plants.

  65. A Lurker;

    Next step, Soylent Green. After all, many lunatic Leftists have been indoctrinated to believe that humans are a disease upon the planet and that humanity should be eliminated or culled.

    That doesn’t look quite right…
    Next step, Soylent Green. After all, many lunatic Leftists have been indoctrinated to believe that humans are a disease upon the planet and that other humans should be eliminated or culled.
    I fixxes it.

  66. Dover Beach;

    If people move to the substitute without compulsion then there’s no problem, DB.

    The issue here is that the people who want this, think compulsion is a jolly fine idea.
    Especially with the RWDB recalcitrants.

  67. CL;

    When this product emerges from Frankenstein’s lab for the final time, it will 1) be histrionically praised for its satisfying realism – indeed, its superiority! – by vegetarian lunatics; 2) be foisted on schools and state-financed institutions; 3) be protected by advertising bans on meat; 4) be subsidised by the state; 5) lead to “growing calls” for meat production to be gradually banned. Also, expect meat lovers to be derided as ‘meat denialists.’

    None of the above is meant to be comedic. Every one of those things would happen.

    Perzaccerly!

  68. Infidel Tiger

    Well said Iampeter.

  69. Anthony:

    In my lab and just about everywhere for decades we use 10% fetal calf serum to grow mouse and human cells in vitro.

    What are the mouse steaks like?
    I don’t want to know about the human steaks.

  70. Infidel Tiger

    JC that is a very suspect thing to say.

    Dude!

  71. None

    C.L.

    #2902553, posted on January 9, 2019 at 4:40 pm

    +1000

  72. None

    Belgium euthanasias the mentally ill and sick. It has long ceased being Christian.

    They now euthanize children too. Belgium is a sulphur pit.

  73. None

    I thought that halal slaughter was different from kosher slaughter.

  74. None

    Animal activist have already infiltrated kosher butchers like Gathercoles in Melbourne. This despite it being a very clean and properly run butcher. I despise animal activists with a passion. Not one of them would be alive today without the sacrifice of animals raised for food or medical or other products.

  75. Ƶĩppʯ (ȊꞪꞨV)

    Right now the ban on halal and kosher meat is simple anti-religious bigotry some dressed up as concern for animal welfare (others are just bigots).

    islam is not a religion

  76. JC

    Define a religion, Zipperhead.

  77. JC

    Artie

    It’s an age thing. I think. As you get older you tend feel like I do. I did say I eat meat.

  78. Anthony

    Winston Smith
    #2902813, posted on January 9, 2019 at 8:36 pm

    What are the mouse steaks like?
    I don’t want to know about the human steaks.

    LOL. A colleague of mine was growing human muscle cells and discussing whether people would eat them. I reckon if you got a stem cell sample from a celebrity and grow it into Food. I would open a restaurant called ‘Bieber Burgers’.

    Dunno about mouse steaks, apparently mice taste like what they eat, which is grain/fish pellets, so, probably seafood marinara. When dissecting lab mice their little hind legs look like mini chicken drumsticks. Quite a few scientists, including myself, look at them and get cravings for fried chicken – good evidence for group think amongst academics!

  79. max

    Murray N. Rothbard:

    It is more than a jest to point out that animals, after all, don’t respect the “rights” of other animals; it is the condition of the world, and of all natural species, that they live by eating other species. Inter-species survival is a matter of tooth and claw. It would surely be absurd to say that the wolf is “evil” because he exists by devouring and “aggressing against” lambs, chickens, etc. The wolf is not an evil being who “aggresses against” other species; he is simply following the natural law of his own survival. Similarly for man. It is just as absurd to say that men “aggress against” cows and wolves as to say that wolves “aggress against” sheep. If, furthermore, a wolf attacks a man and the man kills him, it would be absurd to say either that the wolf was an “evil aggressor” or that the wolf was being “punished” for his “crime.” And yet such would be the implications of extending a natural-rights ethic to animals. Any concept of rights, of criminality, of aggression, can only apply to actions of one man or group of men against other human beings.

    https://mises.org/library/rights-animals

  80. Crossie

    And while those who produce and consume red meat disagree that animal proteins need to be eliminated, Impossible Foods has created the Impossible Burger, a plant-based protein that looks, tastes and smells like meat.

    Looks, taste and smell are irrelevant, the nutritional benefit is paramount. The impossible burger is just another manufactured junk food.

  81. John Constantine

    https://www.livescience.com/62008-lab-grown-human-meat-grown-cannibalism.html

    ” Richard Dawkins wants to know if lab-grown meat will eradicate the taboo against cannibalism.

    In a tweet on March 3, the outspoken evolutionary biologist linked to an article about the possible commercialization of meat grown in a laboratory by the end of 2018. Dawkins was practically drooling, but it wasn’t over the food: “I’ve long been looking forward to this,” he wrote. “What if human meat is grown? Could we overcome our taboo against cannibalism?”

    Lab-grown meat, he continued, would be an “interesting test case” pitting consequentialist morality against “yuck reaction” absolutism. In other words, lab-grown human meat might be ethical in the sense that no one experiences any bad consequences — no killing, no desecrating corpses — but humans might still instinctually recoil at the idea of eating it. ”

    Once the tech is out there, the underground labs will be churning out waleed salami, grown from their Golden Calfs own cells.

    Imagine the couch whale demand for waleed flavoured Tim Tams, made from waleed proteins, the porkasaurus left have always phantasised about just eating the irresistable little man right up, now they are so close to having the magic pudding waleed, they can taste it.

    Comrades

  82. md

    I gave up eating meat years ago, primarily because of the way farmed animals are treated, but also for the health benefits. Quorn is a great substitute for meat products.
    Many readers of this blog will understand that to be a conservative is to be a moral, principled person. For example, we believe in free speech, even though it means we have to endure listening to opinions we detest. Why? Because it is the right thing to do if we want to live in a stable, peaceful society. We do it for ourselves, not for our political opponents, who, I might add, are so consumed by hatred and are so unable to understand what being moral and principled means, that they simply refuse to return the favour.
    But there is a significant element amongst the conservative vote (not actual conservatives but the conservative vote) who are, for want of a better term, bogan conservatives. These are the people who are triggered by bogan radio jocks to oppose everything our political opponents support, vegetarianism being one such thing. Some of the things green political movements support are worthy of everyone’s support and we should be moral and principled enough to do so and not be as stupid as leftists, who will oppose everything their opponents support, no matter how worthy.
    Watch the documentary Earthlings and be sickened by the way people treat farmed animals. When I say ‘sickened’, I’m not just using the term as an embellishment. This video truly is disturbing.

  83. Warburton

    JC
    #2902495, posted on January 9, 2019 at 3:34 pm
    Where’s the problem here? Someone comes up with a solution by way of a substitute and if it popular it will reduce animal slaughter and people here whine about it. What happened to the idea of choice? No one’s being compelled to eat this stuff.

    I thought this was the whole point of the, overall rather good, article. And some of the commenters on here are totally deluded if they think Western countries slaughter animals without causing suffering–at least the ones who don’t care about the suffering at all are honest. One issue not addressed, and not really relevant to this article (it’s a separate topic) at all but still, is where fertiliser and other “by-products” of factory farming (leather?) would come from without it.

  84. John of Mel

    And some of the commenters on here are totally deluded if they think Western countries slaughter animals without causing suffering

    When you start treating dogs/animals like people, you start treating people like dogs/animals.

    There is absolutely no rational basis for fretting about animal suffering like this – not from evolutionary perspective, nor from theological (unless you subscribe to the eastern mysticism).

  85. John of Mel

    Original quote was about dogs, but equally applicable with animals overall.

  86. Iampeter

    md, boy do I agree with your term of “bogan conservative” and I’ll be using it sooner rather than later. On this very blog I imagine 🙂
    Everything else though, I completely disagree.

    The reason something like the holocaust is immoral, is because it is using force against humans, which are rational beings, that need to be free to think and act, if they are to live the way their nature requires them.
    On the flip side, animals are just animals and kill and eat each other and even their own young, all the time. They aren’t rational, don’t what they’re doing and so can’t be dealt with any other way anyway.
    As such, butchering animals and turning them into delicious burgers, cool clothes, medicines, etc is perfectly moral.

    To put it simply:
    Treating people like animals is immoral because it violates rights.
    Treating animals like animals is moral, because no rights are violated and because it benefits the lives of the rational beings that are farming them.

    Also that documentary has made me hungry. Meats and veggies for dinner in this household tonight.

  87. Bootstrapper

    I’m told Cotton growing consumes two thirds of the global supply of herbicides and pesticides. It also consumes nearly as much water as Rice growing. Replacing Cottom with Hemp would have a bigger (positive) impact than eliminating livestock. Domestic livestock exist for one purpose – to convert stuff we (Humans) can’t eat, into stuff we can, like meat, milk, eggs etc. It’s a symbiotic relationship – without them, we don’t eat and die off (or back). Without us, they wouldn’t exist at all. Animal husbandry is a relatively low-tech industry that has a far better chance of surviving the (coming) transition to a post-Industrial future and the ravages of climate instability, than industrial agriculture and the high-tech processes that would be needed to produce artificial protein substitutes.

  88. Bruce of Newcastle

    Strapper – I suspect cotton will eventually be synthesised, since it is basically polymeric cellulose.

    The cotton resource consumption will fix itself as population grows. More demand for food will tend to cause farmers to switch. If chemists can make cotton cheaper than farmers can grow it then everyone will be happy!

  89. Warburton

    John of Mel
    #2903501, posted on January 10, 2019 at 3:50 pm
    And some of the commenters on here are totally deluded if they think Western countries slaughter animals without causing suffering

    When you start treating dogs/animals like people, you start treating people like dogs/animals.

    There is absolutely no rational basis for fretting about animal suffering like this – not from evolutionary perspective, nor from theological (unless you subscribe to the eastern mysticism).

    I don’t necessarily disagree on rational or logical grounds, and it is a by-product of relative luxury that we worry about this at all, but I personally would not want to cause unnecessary suffering to an animal. That makes me question if it is right to consume products where others have caused the unnecessary suffering on my behalf. It is not right or wrong, just an opinion. Still the point of the article is that animal rights people cannot win a logical debate, but it is perfectly correct for them to introduce alternative products into the market and see if they catch on. If they do catch on, no need to win the moral argument any more. And who could argue with that? I guess your point is that it won’t catch on!

  90. Tel

    For example, we believe in free speech, even though it means we have to endure listening to opinions we detest. Why? Because it is the right thing to do if we want to live in a stable, peaceful society.

    Since when did free speech ever require anyone to listen?

    Besides, there’s been plenty of stable, peaceful societies that don’t offer free speech. Ours has restrictions, but other examples would be Thailand where it’s illegal to criticize the monarchy, or any strongly religious society where you cannot criticize the prevailing theocracy (that was how Europe operated for most of history).

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