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3D printed “steaks” are just 3D printed lies pretending to be meat

You can beat this “meat”

3d printed steak
Image: Dezeen

3D printers are wonderful pieces of technology. There is a lot of opportunity within many manufacturing and other sectors for 3D printing to streamline and add efficiencies. For some reason, some companies and individuals seem to think that 3D printing food and calling it something it isn’t is one of those sectors. It’s not steak. It’s fucking bean paste and you can fuck right off with that trash.

The latest 3D printed “steak” news is making the rounds, coming from NovaMeat, a Spanish company clearly confused by the differences between meat and things that are not meat. A 3D printer squirts out a thin pâté of rice, peas and seaweed in the shape of a steak, but not a steak, but called a 3D printed steak because of marketing reasons. It’s a vegetable pâté, crisped on a hot plate and eaten with disdain for reality.

3D printed steaks are not a new way of eating meat because they are not meat. Meat, is meat. It comes from an animal that has been slaughtered and butchered and cooked, preferably over flame. These things are vegan trash patties that might at first glance appear to be meat, but are not meat. This kind of deceptive marketing isn’t going to do the 3D printed food industry any favors. Call it what it is.

The technology and the concept are sound, the end result is not what is being sold.

Look, it’s cool that it exists, but why does it have to be called something it isn’t

“I’m actually for it, but in the way of wanting it as its own thing rather than as a replacement for steak. Same with turkey burgers,” says the top spider defender on Earth. “Which is what I don’t get about vegetarian replacement food. I like vegetarian products. It doesn’t need to be a replica.”

That’s the thing. Sure, we eat too much red meat probably. I don’t actually eat any because it messes with my stomach. But I do eat meat, chicken and fish, and I do eat vegetarian products like smoothies. But what I don’t eat is things named what they are not. Turkey bacon is not bacon, it’s turkey strips. A black bean burger, while generally tasty, is not a burger. It’s a black bean patty in the shape and appearance of a burger.

3D printing these things isn’t going to change the perception, it’s going to create more things that blur the lines of food reality. They can be their own things without having to pretend they are meat substitutes, which might actually make them more accepted and less criticized, as I’m doing here.

The process itself is sound, 3D printing food is the first step towards Star Trek type food replicators. But before we can run to Romulan Ale, we have to wade through greasy, plant-based pretend steaks.

“I’m a carnivore. That thing is plant-based and therefore not a steak in my opinion,” says color-maven Shelby. “There’s something about the process that seems unsafe to me. Like in 20 years, anyone who ate a 3D printed steak or chicken breast will have cancer.”

Look, I get it. Having a vegetarian option for a meat product is a noble effort in conservation and helping people make healthy eating choices. But naming it a steak when it is clearly not a steak is an insult to steaks. As Ron Swanson has proven, nothing beats a good old fashioned cow-meat based burger. Add ketchup if you want, I couldn’t care less.

Local bald man Scott pretty much sums it up, “Considering I’m Filipino on my mom’s side of my family, I’ve eaten some weird shit… tripe, assorted chicken parts, a stew called dinuguan made with pig blood. I’m normally part of the crowd that says ‘Don’t knock it until you try it.’ But 3D printed steaks? Hard pass.”

Where do you stand? Should 3D printed steaks exist? Let us know down below in the comments or carry the discussion over to our Twitter or Facebook.

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A tech writer on the internet for over 15 years for outlets such as Forbes, Wired, TNW, and others, Curtis is exhausted, burnt out and happy to just write buying guides and the occasional review for KnowTechie, the best tech blog your mom never told you about. Ephemeral existence for ephemeral times. Please send pitches and grainy pictures of the inside of your elbow to kevin@knowtechie.com

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