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Ending the age of animal cruelty

We live in a moment when technology has made animal cruelty possible on a scale never imagined in human history, BUT we also live in a moment when technology is about to make that same animal cruelty unnecessary.

EZRA KLEIN: ‘Industrial animal agriculture relies on engineering broiler chickens that grow almost seven times as quickly as they would naturally. It relies on pumping a majority of all the antibiotics used in the United States into farm animals to stop the infections that overcrowding would otherwise cause. A list like this could go on endlessly, but the point is simple: Industrial animal agriculture is not a natural food system. It is a marvel of modern science.

Although we live in a moment when technology has made animal cruelty possible on a scale never imagined in human history, we also live in a moment when technology may be about to make that same animal cruelty unnecessary. We’re getting closer to being able to mimic meat using plant-based ingredients — arguably, Beyond Meat and Impossible Foods have already done so for ground beef — and grow meat from individual cells. And nothing changes a society’s values as quickly as innovations that make a new moral system easy and cheap to adopt.

Bruce Friedrich is the head of the Good Food Institute, which invests in, advises, and advocates for the plant- and cell-based meat industries. That work puts him at the hot center of one of the most exciting and important technological stories of our age: the possible replacement of a cruel, environmentally unsustainable form of food production with a system that’s better for the planet, better for animals, better for our health, and better for our souls. I spoke with Friedrich for my podcast, The Ezra Klein Show. Excerpts of our conversation, edited for length and clarity, follow’. SOURCE…

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