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posted by Fnord666 on Tuesday February 27 2018, @01:37AM   Printer-friendly
from the it's-what's-for-dinner dept.

The U.S. Cattlemen's Association has asked the U.S. Department of Agriculture to develop an official definition for terms like "meat" and "beef", as plant-based alternatives to meats continue to grow in popularity and lab-grown/cultured meat may be coming soon:

Companies like Impossible Foods and Beyond Meat are combining plant-based ingredients and science, rather than animals, to create fake-meat burgers and other products that taste like the real thing.

Now U.S. Cattlemen's Association is looking to draw a line in the sand. The association launched what could be the first salvo in a long battle against plant-based foods. Earlier this month, the association filed a 15-page petition with the U.S. Department of Agriculture calling for an official definition for the term "beef," and more broadly, "meat."

"While at this time alternative protein sources are not a direct threat to the beef industry, we do see improper labeling of these products as misleading," said Lia Biondo, the association's policy and outreach director. "Our goal is to head off the problem before it becomes a larger issue."

[...] While these foods are commonly dubbed "fake meat," there's a little more to the meat-substitute market than that. The Good Food Institute, which advocates a sustainable food supply, breaks it down into two categories: clean meat and plant-based meat. Clean meat refers to "meat" grown in a lab from a small amount of animal stem cells. This kind of meat isn't on the market yet, but it's in development. Plant-based meat is anything that mimics traditional meat but is made mainly using plant ingredients.

Here's an idea: define "meat" for the Cattlemen's Association, then tax it with an exemption for "lab-grown meat".

Related: Lab-Grown Pork Closer to Reality
Lab-Grown Chicken (and Duck) Could be on the Menu in 4 Years
Inside the Strange Science of the Fake Meat that 'Bleeds'
Impossible Foods Just Raised $75 Million for Its Plant-based Burgers
Cargill, Bill Gates, Richard Branson Backed Memphis Meats Expects Meat From Cells in Stores by 2021
Meat Tax Proposed for Sake of Human and Environmental Health.


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  • (Score: 4, Interesting) by deimtee on Tuesday February 27 2018, @11:18AM

    by deimtee (3272) on Tuesday February 27 2018, @11:18AM (#644563) Journal

    It's a bit like the arguments for and against labelling GMO foods.
    Those in favor were arguing that giving customers more information was a good thing. The choice was theirs to make, regardless of how rational you thought they weren't.
    Those against argued that consumers would make poor choices and that the labels would confuse the poor plebs.

    You can probably tell my opinion on GMO labelling. If I want to make a choice on how to spend my money based on something you consider irrational I don't give a flying fuck what you think. I, and everyone else, make less than perfectly rational choices all the time. It's no-one else's business if I choose to pay extra for non-GMO foods, and you paternalistic fucks who think it is can fuck off.

    (Actually, in most cases I don't give a shit about GMO's, it's the 'I know what's good for you better than you do' attitude that pisses me off. Label the fuckers and let the free market sort shit out. (To be clearer I think things like golden rice are brilliant. Things were they add a gene so that the plant can withstand higher doses of poison, and they then use that extra poison, not so much. After all, I don't have the extra genes to withstand that poison.))

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