PETA Offers $1 Million Reward to First Person to Make ‘Test Tube’ Meat
UPDATE: Since 2008, when PETA first announced a $1 million prize for the first laboratory to use chicken cells to create commercially viable in vitro (test tube) meat, researchers—including teams at the University of Missouri and the Netherlands’ University of Maastricht—have made enormous headway in the test-tube meat competition, with a test-tube hamburger taste test on the horizon. However, PETA’s primary interest is in replacing chicken factories, transport, and slaughter because more than 1 million chickens are eaten every hour in the U.S. alone. As an in vitro chicken nugget is still a ways away, PETA has decided to extend this contest until March 4, 2014, the 85th anniversary of Herbert Hoover’s inauguration. You will recall that it was President Hoover’s party that promised a “chicken in every pot.” Well, make that in vitro chicken, and we’ve got a deal. See below for complete contest details.
Scientists around the world are researching or seeking the funds to research ways to produce meat in the laboratory—without killing any animals. In vitro meat production would use animal stem cells that would be placed in a medium to grow and reproduce. The result would be real flesh, of course, and could be used in the same ways that chicken meat is used. Some major breakthroughs have been made toward mastering this technology.
PETA is offering a $1 million reward to the first scientist to produce and bring to market in vitro chicken meat.
Why is PETA supporting this new technology? Despite the fact that chickens can outperform human children in some cognitive tests, can count to five without being taught, and exercise self control, they are arguably the most abused animal on the planet. More chickens are raised and killed for food than all other land animals combined, yet not a single federal law protects them from abuse. In the United States alone, more than 7 billion chickens are killed for their flesh each year. Ninety-nine percent of these animals spend their lives in total confinement—from the moment they hatch until the day they are slaughtered.
Of course, humans don’t need to eat meat at all—vegetarians and vegans are far less likely to get heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, or cancer or become obese than are meat-eaters—and a terrific array of vegetarian mock meats already exists. But because many people refuse to kick their meat addiction, PETA wants to help them switch to flesh that doesn’t cause suffering and death.
Produce an in vitro chicken-meat product that has a taste and texture indistinguishable from real chicken flesh to non-meat-eaters and meat-eaters alike.
- Manufacture the approved product in large enough quantities to be sold commercially and successfully sell it at a competitive price in at least 10 states.
The judging of the taste and texture will be performed by a panel of PETA-approved judges, who will sample the in vitro chicken prepared using PETA’s own fried “chicken” recipe. The in vitro chicken must attain a score of at least 80 out of 100 when evaluated in order to win the prize.
In the meantime, order your free vegetarian/vegan starter kit to get started on a healthy and humane path today!