Deepfake Meats Are Coming to a Table Near You

Image Credit: Bogdan Kurylo/iStock/GettyImages

This week, social media users have been having fun with FaceApp, a free phone app with potentially dubious privacy practices that can age you up 50 years for a giggle. A number of Twitter Cassandras have decried its spread, suggesting that users are merely helping an AI somewhere refine its facial recognition dataset, which could speed up the proliferation of convincing deepfakes.

If you're not too concerned about Jack Nicholson turning into Jim Carrey, consider this: Non-meat meats, plant-based fish, and even meat-made veggies are making their way into the consumer market. The once-ubiquitous meal kit delivery service Blue Apron has just announced that starting in mid-August, customers can get Beyond Meat, the pea-based meat substitute that cooks like the real thing, in their meals. Meal kits are actually more sustainable than they look, potentially making this one more step toward more ethical supply chains.

Meanwhile, with overfishing, bycatch, and fishy in-store labelling plaguing the seafood industry, one natural food company has just rolled out vegan canned tuna. While TUNO does have already have competitors (Good Catch, Vegan Toona), Elizabeth Sherman, writing for The Outline, isn't terribly impressed: "The overall effect," she says, "is of eating protein-fortified cardboard."

There's one other option, if you're hungry for meat but have to disguise the fact. The fast food chain Arby's now offers the Marrot, a roasted carrot made of turkey. Arby's president Rob Lynch told the New York Times that moccoli was on its way. Whatever you choose to eat, it's a weird and wonderful time to be alive.