Could in vitro meat save the whales?

Animal welfare is an important issue for Republic of Langrangia. How we treat our fellow living beings, is the litmus test of our humanity. One important issue is whaling. During the 20th century commercial whalers almost exterminated many whale species. Until in 1986 the International Whaling Commission put a moratorium on whaling.

Since then there are two camps: one side is for a permanent ban on whaling, arguing that the population of whales is still too small. The other side argues that some species have recovered enough to re-allow limited whaling. Since cetaceans are intelligent animals, we oppose the killing of these animals.

In-vitro meat is a recent scientific breakthrough, which allows people to produce meat in an animal and environmental friendly way. For this method of meat production there’s no need to kill animals, instead stem cells are taken from the animal through a biopsy. One stem cell can, according to the scientists involved, produce up to 10,000 kg of meat, which is in the order of the size of a medium-sized whale.

For research scientists perform regularly biopsies on living whales, and without killing them. Therefore whalers of the future shouldn’t have any trouble with obtaining whale stem cells for the production of in-vitro whale meat.

This approach would solve many issues: first, the IWC can prohibit the killing of whales for ever. Secondly, whalers do not lose their jobs, since they are still needed to collect tissue samples from whales. And consumers can buy whale meat with the knowledge that no whale has been killed and hence that whales will not be hunted to extinction again.


8 thoughts on “Could in vitro meat save the whales?”

  1. A proposal I agree with. We are busy killing other species to extinction, believing that men were created by a god to subdue the earth! A funny specie we are.
    There is a problem here at home with poaching of elephants and rhinos that is quickly becoming very serious!

    1. Actually the problems with elephants and rhinos are quite easy to solve. These animals are not killed for their meat, but for their tusks and horns.

      In Siberia there’s an industry based on ivory of mammoths, so ivory could be obtained from the carcases of elephants died by natural causes. Several years ago, animal protectors, had the tusks removed from elephants in order to save them from poachers. Therefore one could obtain ivory from an elephant without killing them.

      In regard with rhinos there are ways to deal with. First, is educating people that the horns have no real medical powers, and it’s made of the same material as human hair and nails. Secondly, one could “farm” rhinos, and remove the horns at some point, and this also without killing them.

      1. The problem here is the tusks are not even used locally. As for rhino farms, that would work if it was tried. We have a few rhino sanctuaries but even these are sometimes invaded by poachers.

        1. I believe some guy in South-Africa has tried to farm rhinos. The problem with sanctuaries, there too few people to guard those and some of the guards are also corrupt.

  2. I’m not too sure that whalers would keep their jobs. I mean, they could keep a job, but there job? I’m not so sure. They would need to alter their equipment in such a way that they could catch these whales, without killing them. And I’m not sure how the in vitro technology works, but would they continue to have to capture whales for tissue?

    1. Great observation about the transformation of their jobs, but my case was about ensuring the whalers wouldn’t get unemployed. With the current state of affairs one stem cell can produce up to 10,000 kg of meat, therefore regular new tissue have to be obtained. Capturing is a great word, nowadays scientists can collect a tissue sample of a whale by approaching them with a small boat.

      1. Interesting. We can only guess as to how it would transform things, and the least of my worries is that whalers would lose their jobs. But just something to think about, nonetheless.

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