One of the biggest hurdles in the way of a major roll-out of cultured meat products is the high production cost for even making one burger. The input cost has decreased – the first cultured burger cost producer Mosa Meat $250,000 (£190,331) to create in 2013, though it claimed a ‘chicken’ nugget would cost $50 (£38) nowadays. However, it is still exorbitantly high compared to traditional methods.
Revising our understanding of meat to make room for in vitro meat involves a similar move. We should strip down our understanding of meat so that an element previously deemed essential — in this case, being sourced in an animal carcass — is no longer strictly necessary. On this updated, more minimalist understanding, all that is necessary for something to qualify as meat is that it has a meaty substance and function. Just as Model Ts and Teslas both qualify as cars, animal-sourced and lab-grown versions would then both qualify as real meat.