Andras Forgacs is the CEO of Modern Meadow, a
company that is working on 3D printing meat. Modern Meadow is
funded, in part, by PayPal founder and libertarian pet projects
funder Peter Thiel.
Forgacs popped up
on Reddit today to answer questions. He describes his venture
as having “a certain transhumanist element,” and says it “is as
much about minimizing animal suffering as it is about mitigating
the environmental impacts.” ;His previous company was Organovo,
which was developing 3D printed human organs for transplant. He
says: “We figured, if we can make medical grade tissues then we can
also make muscle for meat and hide for leather.”
Some highlights from his AMA:
Q: How do you expect pricing to develop? Looking for an answer
like: First production: limited distribution, $100/kg First large
grocery chain adoption: $40/kg Replaced all animal-meat in the
A: On pricing, I can’t give you too much detail since we still
don’t fully know the answers. Currently, we are only making a
couple ounces at a time so price is meaningless at such a small
scale. We anticipate getting to limited production at something
around $100/lb but hopefully less. By the time this scales to
grocery stores, it should be more affordable at $30/lb or less.
These are just rough figures since a lot will change as our
And this honest answer:
Q: Does it taste the same as regular meat?
A: I’ve tasted it as have my colleagues. We’ve only been able to
have small bites since we’re still working on getting the process
I cooked some pieces in olive oil and ate some with and without
salt and pepper. Not bad. The taste is good but not yet fully like
meat. We have yet to get the fat content right and other elements
that influence taste. This process will be iterative and involve us
working closely with our consulting chefs.
There is this sad news, though:
As we achieve the right proof of concept with beef, we may
branch out to other types of high value and environmentally taxing
meats as well such as pork, blue-fin tuna, etc.
Human meat is not on the menu. Sorry.
Skip to the 5:30 mark in this video to see
Andras’ dad and co-founder eat a small sample of the company’s
Also highly relevant, today’s Reason TV video:
It’s Hard to Gross Out a Libertarian: Jonathan Haidt on How Our
Tolerance for Disgust Determines Our Politics