Lab-Grown Burgers Are Already Getting Much Cheaper

The future of food.
The future of food. Photo: David Parry/Pool/Reuters/Corbis

Grocery stores are now that much closer to gaining an aisle dedicated to lab meat : The cost of making “in vitro” burgers has dropped drastically compared to just two years ago, when just one patty cost $325,000 (or the equivalent of 15,000 Spotted Pig burgers). Mark Post, the Dutch professor who created the original stem-cell burger, says that after “further development,” the price has fallen to around $27 a pound.

His team, called Cultured Beef, does admit that a few hurdles remain. The process of making one of these burgers is still way too slow, and hardly scalable for mass volumes. The team isn’t quite sure how to fix that without resorting to growth hormones, which defeats the purpose, of course. Also, the scientists still haven’t figured out exactly how to address the taste, which was described by one tester as “like an animal-protein cake.” At least eating one won’t lead to bankruptcy.


Lab-Grown Burgers Are Already Getting Much Cheaper