Food For Thought…

Johnny-on-the-Spot … by John Foster …

By the way, if certain things make you “squeamish”, you might not want to go any further in this article.

You’ve been warned!

A new vegan burger that “tastes like human flesh” brought home awards at the Cannes Lions Festival of Creativity in France.

This five-day “International Festival of Creativity” has been championing creative excellence since 1954 with the goal of providing “a global destination and the definitive benchmark for creativity that drives progress”.

Now, I’m attempting to understand how a vegan burger that tastes like human flesh ultimately drives progress.

The burger in question came from the Swedish plant-based food brand “Oumph!”
and it is made with soybeans, mushrooms, vegetable fats and spices.

When I heard the story, two thoughts came to find.


Doesn’t somebody claiming to have a vegan burger tasting like human flesh have to actually consumed it?

Makes me think again about Mickey D’s “McRib meal”.

There was a report years ago regarding a company that supposedly started selling a “
healthy human flesh alternative” based on Tofu-Hufu (2005).

In part, the article said “If you’ve never had human flesh before, think of the taste and texture of beef, except a little sweeter in taste and a little softer in texture”.

The company said, “Contrary to popular belief, people do not taste like pork or chicken”.

However, the article turned out to be a spoof.

“Cannibalism” is the eating of human flesh by humans.

It is also called “Anthropophagy”.

I found an article in “The Guardian” that looked into the topic.

I discovered there have been several people actually charged with “cannibalism” and interestingly enough, several are Germans.

Probably the most famous human flesh-eater is Armin Meiwes, currently serving a life sentence in prison for the deed.

A former computer repair technician, Meiwes was convicted of murdering and eating a “voluntary” victim in 2001 after discovering him on the Internet.

That portion of the story on the “voluntary victim” is bizarre in itself.

But, in an interview with “The Guardian” from his prison cell, Meiwes, also known as the “Rottenberg Cannibal” and “Der Metzgermeister” (The Master Butcher) described the taste.

“The flesh tastes like pork, a little more bitter, stronger.”

He added, “It tastes quite good”.

Then there was William Buehler Seabrook, a New York Times journalist.

He traveled extensively in West Africa and once persuaded a medical intern at a Paris University to give him a chunk of human meat from a healthy man who had been killed in an accident.

Seabrook said “It was like good, fully-developed veal, not young but not yet beef; a mild, good meat”.

Now, there are some people who choose to eat the placenta after the birth of a child.

It’s known as “placentophagy”.

I understand you remove the umbilical cord and membrane and cook it like you would liver.

Smothered in onions, perhaps?

Liver and onions and creamed potatoes was one of my nightmare meals as a child growing up in northern Ohio.

You can count me out when it comes to ordering a side of placenta the next time my wife and I dine out.

So, I don’t see a big need for a vegan burger that tastes like human flesh.

Unless someone has plans for a really weird movie-themed diner.

Remember the 1993 movie “Alive”?

It was based on the 1974 book by Piers Paul Read entitled, “Alive: The Story pf Andes Survivors”.

The book was all about the story of a Uruguayan rugby team that crashed in the South American Andes in October, 1972.

There were 45 people on the flight and 16 were rescued alive after surviving 72 days without food.

The survivors told rescuers that they resorted to cannibalism to stay alive.

Perhaps there’s a macabre market for dining in a super-refrigerated restaurant where only melted snow and vegan burgers tasting like human flesh are served.

Otherwise, I’m not sure there’s going to be much of a market for a non-meat burger that tastes like human flesh.

Still, I’m concerned about this burger claiming to taste like human flesh.

If someone behind the project didn’t actually nibble on some human meat, how can they safely promote it as such, simply based on the input from the aforementioned messers Meiwes and Seabrook.

It might turn out to be another “New Coke Formula” fiasco.

Now, I must confess that I’m not much of a fan of “meatless” burgers.

Must be my middle-class, Midwest upbringing.

My Dad used to like his steaks on the rare side.

I remember him more than once stating, “I want my (burger or steak” to be rare enough than if you put a bandage on it, it might be ready to graze the next morning”.

There are a few parts of the world where cannibalism still occurs but I’m of the opinion if human flesh was that tasty to begin with, it might have put a whole new meaning on the phrase of “Why don’t you come over for dinner?”

I’m gonna pass on the vegan burger with the taste of human flesh.

I might even look closer if you offer some sponge cake delights just to make certain they’re not real “Lady Fingers”.


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