The science has long been out that the meat industry, and indeed animal products of any kind that are mass-produced to meet the needs of capitalist consumerism are bad for the environment. In many cases, they are also bad for our bodies, and they are indisputably bad for the animals from which they are harvested...but it tastes so goood.
In the never-ending quest for delicious and nutritious food alternatives to meat, we often end up empty-handed. Sure, tofu can taste alright, but it lacks the beneficial nutrients of meat and certainly does not satisfy the craving. Soy-based fake turkeys and field roasts also can’t deliver the “umami” taste, that inseparable meaty flavor that can’t be replicated in a lab.
Or can it?
Cue Not Company, a burgeoning startup in Chile that actually uses an Artificial Intelligence software to analyze the molecular buildup of food products, the type of and availability of resources required for its production, and how human taste buds react to it. All of this information goes towards the creation of new alternatives to meat products, utilizing plant-based alternatives that provide everything that most meat-alternatives lack: taste, texture and nutrition.
As humans in the 21st century, it is solely our own responsibility to protect the earth and its more sentient inhabitants. That science is pushing the boundaries of how we can make plants taste like meat is miraculous, but environmental sustainability as well as animal welfare should be motivation enough for making the shift from a meat-centric food economy.
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