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Teacher’s Questions for Engineered Meat

Teacher’s Questions for Engineered Meat

SCIENCE

Before reading:

  1. Have you ever thought about whether food and drink that you consume have ingredients that were grown in a lab instead of on a farm? What kinds of ingredients in your food and beverages do you think could have been lab-grown?
  2. Would you eat meat that was grown in a lab instead of on a farm? Explain why or why not.

During reading:

  1. What is the estimated cost of the burger that Mark Post will eat on TV in October?
  2. List three similarities between meat grown in a lab and meat grown on a farm. What is the one big difference between lab-grown meat and farm-raised meat (other than cost at this point)?
  3. How does an increasing human population affect the demand for meat?
  4. How does the practice of raising animals for consumption affect the environment?
  5. What color is Post’s lab-grown meat? Why does it have this hue?
  6. How big are the strips of meat growing in Post’s lab? How many of these strips does Post need to build a burger?
  7. How long have scientists known that tissues can be kept alive outside of the body?
  8. What kinds of cells (other than muscle cells) have made lab-grown meat possible?
  9. In what other way are scientists using stem cells?
  10. Describe the three-step process that Post uses to get the muscle stem cells to start dividing in the lab.
  11. How do scientists make lab-grown meat “work out”?
  12. Explain the drawback of this muscle-building regimen.
  13. Explain a potential drawback of using stem cells to grow meat in a lab.

After reading:

  1. Did reading the story change your mind about whether you’d eat lab-grown meat? Why or why not?
  2. Can you think of another food or drink item that could be grown in a lab instead of on a farm? Would growing this product in a lab benefit people and the environment? Would you eat it?

SOCIAL STUDIES

  1. Do you think more people would consider eating meat, or consider eating it more often, if it were grown in a lab and no animals were killed to produce it? Explain your answer.

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