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Cannibalism so sticks in my throat

I CANNOT see me becoming a cannibal, to be honest.

For a start, I'm an accidental vegetarian, having just sort of drifted into it, though I eat fish, which my researchers tell me means I'm a piscatarian.

Who'd have thought? I don't remember eating any piscs. Not taking the piscatorial, apparently, is Professor Paul Ehrlich, of Stanford University, Americashire, who says we may have to start eating our dead because of overpopulation. I see.

Well, it's not the sort of news we like to hear. But we'll just have to get on with it, I suppose. Anyone seen my bib? Wait a minute, this is outrageous! Don't be absurd. Cannibalism? That really sticks in my throat.

The professor points out that, in 45 years from now, 2.5 billion people will have been added to the planet. As well as making it difficult to get a seat on the bus, this will cause "resource wars", with scarcity prompting us to contemplate our navels, wondering what would be the best sauce to go with them.

Quoth the prof: "We will soon be asking: is it perfectly okay to eat the bodies of your dead because we're all so hungry?"

He said humanity is "moving in that direction with ridiculous speed". Well, the irresponsible will keep breeding, right enough. But I can't see how that necessarily results in cannibalism. Vegetarianism can be a pain in the rump at times, but it's not the end of the world.

In fact, the biggest threat to vegetarianism might also be the answer to Prof Ehrlich's fears: scientists are developing new ways to grow meat in the lab.

Consider: if a bacon buttie could be provided without anything being clobbered or having its throat cut, who could cavil?

True, there'd remain something gross about sinews and flesh but, oh, that delicious smell.

Meat-eaters online tend to be angry, self-righteous people - all that guilt - and I'm sure some chest-beaters would still prefer their meat blootered first. But, for reasonable carnivores, this lab-meat could be perfectly acceptable.

Growing meat in the lab will mean fewer farm beasties blowing raspberries at the ozone layer, for a start.

But, best of all, it means we won't have to resort to chomping on human corpses. Yay.

For, taken in the round, it's a good rule in life never to eat anything that once had a name.

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