Support public funding

Sens. Maggie Hassan and Jeanne Shaheen should support federal funding for cultured-meat research. For those who don’t know, cultured meat is grown from cells, without slaughter. Widespread adoption of this revolutionary protein will dramatically reduce our pandemic risk, our negative impact on the environment, and the suffering we inflict on animals.

Since livestock are removed from the process of making cultured meat, zoonotic diseases like COVID-19 will have a much harder time making the jump to humans. Further, this new protein requires a fraction of the land, freshwater and greenhouse-gas emissions necessary to raise animals. Last but not least, the cruelty of factory farming will be a thing of the past.

An Israeli company has reduced its production cost to $7.50 for a quarter pound of cultured chicken. Still, more research is required to make the price competitive with slaughtered meat. We need to help develop this nascent industry for the sake of public health, the environment, and animal welfare. Senators should support government funding for this purpose.