Thursday, March 12, 2009

CloFu - the food of the future

In recent years, the vegetarian/vegan lifestyle has been publicized with ever-increasing attention. Nowadays, there seem to be many more substitutes for meat, cheese, and dairy products than there are actual meats, cheeses, and dairy products - tofu, tempeh, seitan, mock meats, veggie and Boca burgers, soy milk, rice milk...basically any combination of soy protein, wheat gluten, nuts and vegetables.

But this post is not an exploration of all the different options offered to vegans and vegetarians. Neither is it a criticism of the plethora of these products that seem to be choking meat eaters. It is, instead, going to showcase one particularly ridiculous product. A product that has not yet been made, but that will no doubt become a clamorous issue for vegans, meat-eaters, and George Clooney alike.

George Clooney? Yes. George Clooney. In the article below from World Entertainment News Network, PETA describes another publicity measure to convert people (most likely the female demographic, age 18-59) to veganism.

PETA Bosses Eye Clooney-Flavoured Food

12 March 2009 3:00 PM, PDT

Bosses at animal rights group People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) are sweating over a new idea to turn George Clooney's perspiration into a tofu flavour.

PETA president Ingrid E. Newkirk has written to the movie star asking him for his permission to market CloFu.

The wacky idea came about after Newkirk was offered a vial of handsome George's sweat - apparently taken from a gym towel he used during a recent trip to Washington, D.C.

Unsure what to do with the sample, Newkirk took it to PETA's boffins, who assured her it could be scrumptious.

In her letter to Clooney, the president writes, "The technology actually exists to take your perspiration and make it into George

Clooney-flavored tofu. We could do that and give the tofu away.

"Of course, your fans would swoon at the idea of eating CloFu, but what interests us most is that we would attract many people who don't try tofu because they worry that it would be bland or that they wouldn't know how to cook it. CloFu will help people be healthier and more environmentally friendly and will spare animals from being killed for the table."

And taste expert Dr. Harry Lawless of Cornell University insists the idea is not as far-fetched as it sounds: "It is no different than making artificial chicken flavour for instant gravy."

PETA spokeswoman Amanda Schinke says, "We believe CloFu would be delicious on its own or served over rice with a light soy sauce and sauteed collards, in a casserole with melted vegan cheese and olives, or perhaps pressed with vegan pesto in a panini."

But Clooney's initial response isn't all that encouraging. In a statement through his representative, the movie star says, "As a mammal, I'm offended."

Verdict has yet to be passed on whether PETA is serious, whether Clooney is willing, and whether Cornell University has lost any credibility.

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