1. News & Issues
You can opt-out at any time. Please refer to our privacy policy for contact information.

Discuss in my forum

David Emery

'Frankenchicken' May Soon Become a Reality, Scientists Say

By July 9, 2005

Follow me on:

Remember the urban legend claiming that fast food giant KFC was forced to change its name from Kentucky Fried Chicken because the products on its menu are supposedly made from a "genetically manipulated organism" so far removed from the real thing that it can't legally be called chicken? Well, it appears rumormongers may have something to cluck about for real in the not-too-distant future as researchers in the field of tissue engineering perfect in vitro technologies "that could grow chicken nuggets without the chicken, on a large scale," according to a just-released scientific paper.

"Cultured meat" would be healthier than ordinary meat, scientists say, and cut down on environmental pollution associated with raising livestock. The technique involves replicating individual muscle cells on a massive scale and growing them on flat sheets or in strands which can be harvested and processed into products resembling actual beef or chicken. "With a single cell, you could theoretically produce the world's annual meat supply," doctoral student Jason Metheny said in a University of Maryland press release. "In the long term, this is a very feasible idea."

Maybe so. But can we call it chicken?

Comments

May 7, 2006 at 9:10 am
(1) Nellie says:

Well I just recently had KFC and I doubt it’s genetically altered. And, they did say the word chicken, more than once. I used to work for KFC years back. None of the urban legends can be proven. About the only gross thing we had to deal with was roaches, but the dept. of health closed the store I worked in a couple years after I quit. They would fall in the corn water and in the ice machine and crawl all over the place. Gravy was made by the drippings from the pressure cookers and a gravy packet, and water. Nothing sinister or wierd about that.

December 5, 2006 at 10:57 pm
(2) H. Florek says:

Yeah, it is just one of those legends that you know can’t be true. And where would KFC make this stuff, in a secret lab? Kinda creepy, still.

February 5, 2007 at 10:59 am
(3) Carole briscoe says:

Well I am in jamaica and i just got an email from my husband and have emailed it to some of my friends. so when they go to the USA, they may never eat any chicken at all

February 15, 2007 at 10:44 am
(4) nafania says:

Carole, go read some science, before “not eating it again”. really.

March 6, 2007 at 1:08 am
(5) Mirosho says:

What people here fail to realise is that government experiments have been kept top secret for decades. Take this scenario, if you will.
(Fake company; I’ll name it Jarbled Dee foods)
“How would you like increased profits free by allowing us to test the safety of our genetically altered chicken?”

Jarbled Dee foods: Increased profits would be nice. We’ll do it.

Why hasn’t anyone considered this? Corrupt business tactics are as common as the cash they make. What better way to do this than with the biggest cover-up artists on the planet?

March 20, 2007 at 7:49 am
(6) Carlos says:

Well all and all this is not so far from reality, if you really want to know the truth about the chicken go to http://www.meat.org . It’s really weird!!!!!

May 11, 2007 at 5:39 pm
(7) heather says:

dont eat chicken or meat

sickos

September 11, 2007 at 7:43 am
(8) shaun says:

May I ask the stupid question as to whom has actually gone to KFC´s production sites to found out the actual truth (actual photos and decent research would be appreciated) instead of everyone’s opinions or beliefs.

I find it extremely believable that genetically modified foods have reached all areas of food production, just take a look agriculture in the US and the Montenegro Corp for example and the controversy surrounding GMO. The only reason why there has not been such an uproar is that plants fall way down the ladder of ethical infringements concerning nature. However companies are free to genetically modify plants as they feel fit.
Why on earth would the likes of the biggest fast-food chains not take an interest in this technology? Why is that so unfathomable? Another point of concern is that most of the influential figures of the food-health public sectors in the US are ex employees of such organizations, which in effect somehow allows this to happen. Why do you think that GM foods in the US don’t even need to be labeled, where the EU wont even import them? And Japan has stated that it will watch children in the US for the next 10 years for the effects.

One should never be surprised of such allegations until they have been completely disproven by creditable investigation, and not by the ¨I can’t imagine they would do such a thing¨ approach.

September 12, 2007 at 8:10 am
(9) shaun says:

Sorry Monsanto I mean

October 7, 2007 at 7:07 pm
(10) Per Aaro says:

Who cares? It still got the same taste and isnt any unhealtier than the real thing?

December 24, 2007 at 3:18 pm
(11) t says:

“Well, it appears rumormongers may have something to cluck about for real in the not-too-distant future as researchers in the field of tissue engineering perfect in vitro technologies “that could grow chicken nuggets without the chicken, on a large scale,” according to a just-released scientific paper.

The technique involves replicating individual muscle cells on a massive scale and growing them on flat sheets or in strands which can be harvested and processed into products resembling actual beef or chicken.”

WTF ewww i dont kno about u…but hell if imma eat somethin like that bleh

May 22, 2008 at 8:58 pm
(12) Bruce says:

Just a hoax! My dad used to work at a poultry farm, he told me that KFC buys the chicken from there in bulk, so do regular citizens. The chickens are normal! Suffer no delusions and keep of the conspiracy theories!

November 15, 2008 at 9:26 am
(13) spacebunny says:

Well when they learn how to invent replicators as seen on Star Trek let me know. lol.

February 12, 2009 at 1:06 am
(14) Roger says:

It´s very simple, actually – that which increases profits will be done. Morality has no place in big business. They´re in for the money not for your health, after all! Supervising organisations like the USDA, or rather persons holding key positions can always be bribed. Happens all the time, all over the world.
The last Chicken burger I ate at KFC two days ago did not look (and taste!) as if it contained chicken meat at all. The meat was brown, had long stripes of strange muscle tissue in it. Right now my body aches all over and my stomach is totally messed up. After researching a little bit, I found other people having the same problems after eating one of KFC´s burgers. The wings etc. are no problem, apparently. Don´t eat the chicken burgers!!!

June 14, 2012 at 4:58 am
(15) steve says:

Good. If they push through with this, nobody will ever have to kill a chicken again. Having growth cells extracted is just like having shots for the birds-cruelty-free chicken nuggets, anyone?

March 8, 2013 at 4:01 am
(16) Wafflez says:

bit late to the discussion, but the KFC rumors are still circulating. However I agree with Steve on this one, and the rumors might well prove valid at some point or another rather soon actually. With the ability to grow tissues now having reached new heights. It really is a matter of time before we switch from the real deal to “Altered” products in fast food restraunts. Honestly would that be a bad thing? All those animal activists out there ranting and raving about the wholesale slaughter of animals? Well what if there was no need for such abysmal conditions for the animals. IS that not more HUMANE?! I mean SERIOUSLY, everyone’s ranting about this rumor/possible fact as if its a “BAD” thing. I don’t believe it is, and will encourage the scientists to continue their research. It’s coming people whether you want it or not. Might as well begin with the right mindset before the change occurs. If it hasn’t already.

May 14, 2013 at 11:59 pm
(17) Kimaroo says:

I agree with Wafflez on this one. As soon as I read the “Frankenchicken” post I immediately thought this would be great for animal rights.

Leave a Comment


Line and paragraph breaks are automatic. Some HTML allowed: <a href="" title="">, <b>, <i>, <strike>
Top Related Searches
  • scientists
    1. About.com
    2. News & Issues
    3. Urban Legends

    ©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.