The line between celebrity worship and cannibalism thinned ever so slightly this week. Meet BiteLabs.org, a website purportedly dedicated to growing artisanal meat from celebrity tissue samples.
Set up more like an art project than a legitimate (and presumably delicious) commercial enterprise, the site seems to be poking fun at the recent trend of alternative food options (see Soylent) more than anything else. But they are, presumably, 100 per cent serious. In describing the process, Bite Labs invites you to: "Imagine meat like never before".
The most interesting part of all this is the fact that, at least scientifically speaking, it is an entirely feasible idea to pull off. Talking to Motherboard, Kevin from BiteLabs attempted to assure them of BiteLabs' sincerity:
The product is indeed salami. Each salami will have roughly 30 per cent celebrity meat and 40 per cent lab-grown animal meats (we're currently looking into ostrich and venison but pork and beef are more popular in our early research). The rest will consist of fats and spices. This break-down comes from consultation with expert food designers and chefs.
Of course, everything depends on courting buyers along with willing celebrities since the team is "in startup mode at the moment." So if this is a prank/PR stunt, at least they're doing a damn good job of keeping to the script.
Right now, the group has highlighted James Franco, Jennifer Lawrence, Kanye West, and Ellen Degeneres as their ideal celeb salami lineup, even going so far as to give each prospective person-sausage a taste overview.
Of course, human-based food products are nothing new. We've already seen cheese born of armpit sweat and beer from vaginal yeast (a classic combination). This, however, takes things to a whole other level. It's not just food created with help from the human body, it's turning the human body into actual food. Or at least close enough to really make you think.
Only time will tell what will become of BiteLabs—be it an impressive PR stunt (probably) or a culinary revolution (less likely but fingers crossed). But until then, BiteLabs encourages you to tweet at any celebrities you'd like to consume in the form of fine cured meats. There can be no higher compliment. [BiteLabs via Motherboard]