PETA short on meat in its $1m offer

Nothing says good eatin' like test-tube meat - at least that's what PETA hopes

Nothing says good eatin' like test-tube meat - at least that's what PETA hopes.

The animal rights group's latest campaign is determined to change Americans' carnivorous ways. It is offering $1 million to the first scientist to create "in vitro chicken meat," replacing the real farm-raised thing, by 2012.

This isn't the first time PETA has taken eyebrow-raising measures to convey a message. But here, it chose to go after the American belly. Preservatives and sugar substitutes might be fine, but Fran-ken-meat - not so much.

Moreover, the organization is appealing to people's palates with a product that is bound to spark controversy. Chemically enhanced food is banned in Europe, and creating tissue in a lab remains a hot-button topic in the US. Genetically modified plants are enough to get people excited, so test-tube meat certainly will.

Even some members of PETA are calling it a sell-out move. If you can't convince people in your own ranks that this is a good idea, how are you going to move meat eaters who truly love the taste of real fried chicken?

PETA says "a terrific array of vegetarian mock meats already [exists]," but people's reluctance to kick their "meat addiction" means it needs to take a new approach. Perhaps it would be better off asking scientists to come up with a way to make Tofurkey more appealing.

Rating: 2 (Ill-advised)

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