"In spite of the fact that popular skepticism has been aroused concerning synthetic food, the new scientific process of manufacturing edibles is a reality and not a myth," These are the words of Professor J. V. Osterhaut, Professor of Botany in the University.
Professor Osterhaut explained in detail how certain products could be create from their constituent elements. Various kinds of sugar can be manufactured in the laboratory, as well as certain protein products. Fats have not as yet been created artificially by the synthetic method.
Open New Fields for Experiment.
"How great is the actual values of these discoveries?" Professor Osterhaut was asked.
"In the first place", he replied, "they open new fields of scientific experimentation. The commercial value of the method depends upon whether sugar and similar foods can be produced in large quantities by the laboratory method. It would be very unscientific to hazard a prophecy as to the future developments in this line. It is merely a question of time till discoveries made often accidentally, find their way to factory and are used in large scale production. Almost every scientific discovery is made use of sooner of later."
Chemical Manufacture Cheapest.
To illustrate his point Professor Osterhaut told the interesting story of a young California scientist who defeated the high cost of living by finding a way of manufacturing tartaric acid in the laboratory. He produced a cheaper articles than was obtainable in the market, and made a commercial success of his venture.
Indigo is now also made artificially, and this manufacturing process has driven the indigo plant from the market, because indigo can now be made at less cost than it can be grown. Professor Osterhaut indicated that the expected interesting developments in synthetic manufacture in the future.