Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

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We have seen the future of food, and although it doesn't sound very appetizing yet, it could well turn out to be the biggest culinary leap forward since early humans discovered fire.

The world's first test-tube hamburger looks right and it even has a comparable texture, but the few people who actually took a bite said its flavour was below the standards of burger lovers.

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It may only be a matter of time, however, before scientists perfect the art and develop an artificial burger that tastes great, but doesn't have saturated fats and other heart-clogging ingredients. It would mean you can have your cake and it eat, too.

Other meat-like foods, such as chicken and pork, won't be far behind.

As Gwynne Dyer explains on the page opposite, the invention of man-made meat could have enormous implications for the planet by reducing carbon emissions and providing food for a growing population.

For vegetarians, it means "meat" could be eaten without ethical objections, since no animal needs to be killed in the process.

Scientists used to speculate that food might be served in the form of a pill in the future, which might still be necessary for space travel, but the idea of cultured meat is a much more attractive alternative for those of us stuck on a planet with rising demands on limited resources.

Editorials are the consensus view of the Winnipeg Free Press’ editorial board, comprising Catherine Mitchell, David O’Brien, Shannon Sampert, and Paul Samyn.

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition August 7, 2013 A8

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