In search of meat produced without slaughtering animals, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals is offering $1 million to scientists across the globe for a way to produce meat in the laboratory. In vitro meat production would use animal stem cells reproduced and grown in a medium. The result would mimic flesh that could be cooked and eaten. Some advancements have been made toward this technology, but it will be several years before in vitro meat could be publicly available.

To be eligible for the $1 million prize, researchers must produce an in vitro chicken-meat product that has a taste and texture indistinguishable from the real thing and be ready to sell by June 30, 2012. The contestant also must produce the product in commercial quantities in at least 10 states.

Well, so much for natural food products.