A new meat on the horizon

A New Meat on the Horizon 

Science has developed artificial meat without killing animals


What once sounded like a science-fiction story has now become a reality in some laboratories around the globe. Scientists are working on alternative meat production methods where meat no longer comes from a slaughtered animal, but is being grown artificially in labs. The first lab born burger was publicly showcased, cooked, and tasted in 2013.

As lab grown meat is a topic that has been gaining public interest, FOUR PAWS is closely monitoring the progress.  Here is what we know so far:

With conventional animal products globally accounting for over 80 billion1 lives of animals per year, 83 % of agricultural land use2 and 16.5%3 of the world's greenhouse gas emissions, "Cultivated Meat" (also known as "Clean Meat") could help us conserve our limited resources and has the potential to save billions of animals per year from inhumane conditions and eventual slaughter. This is an initiative FOUR PAWS is strongly in favor of.

Though large-scale manufacturing of cultured meat is costly, which includes the cost of cell culture and skilled labor, the costs are drastically decreasing, which highlights the potential of making "Cultivated Meat" available to the masses in the not so distant future.

We currently don’t know what all the consequences for farm animals and their welfare will be, but the advancements in recent years is encouraging, and there is optimism around the potential positive impact this meat successor would have. Since this innovation is still currently ongoing, with an ever-increasing interest, we presume that a massive positive change in the farming of animals is likely to happen.

To learn more about cultivated meat, check out our interview with Dr. Mark Post.

Conventional meat production is very inefficient

For every 100 kilocalories you feed a cow, you only get 2 kilocalories of beef back, which means, 98% is lost in the process of producing beef. For lamb, 96% is lost during conversion, for pork it’s 91% and 87% for poultry. This is why eating less meat would mean eliminating large losses of calories, thus being able to feed more people around the world along with reducing the amount of farmland needed. This would free up billions of acres for natural vegetation, forests, and ecosystems to return.


Most animal based products available in supermarkets come from animals in conventional agriculture. This system is designed to mass produce items such as meat, eggs, and milk. Animal welfare considerations are not at the forefront of this process, therefore animals farmed in this way are not able to live in an environment in accordance with their physical, mental, or emotional needs.   

Many people do not want to support the suffering of animals. But what can you do about it? The good news is that everyone can take action and directly help animals through the individual choices they make and by being aware of what products they are buying and endorsing.

Reduce – Refine – Replace

FOUR PAWS encourages people who choose an animal-friendly lifestyle to reduce their consumption of animal derived products and include more plant-based alternatives in their diet.  

In this way, you actively help as a consumer and show support for more meat alternatives & plant-based food innovations.


Tell industries to drive meat reduction

Its time for them to take responsibility!

Find out more


1 http://www.fao.org/faostat/en/#data/QL (Livestock Primary 2019)
2 Poore, J., & Nemecek, T. (2018). Reducing food’s environmental impacts through producers and consumers. Science, 360(6392), 987-992.
3 Twine, R. Emissions from Animal Agriculture; URL: https://www.mdpi.com/2071-1050/13/11/6276

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