PT 3: Cowboy finds himself a lab

After searching long and wide, the quest for knowledge and know-how brought our boys to Belgian soil. Hidden away amidst the sprawling facilities of Ghent University, they found themselves at the doorstep of a laboratory like no other. Inside, cowboys were hard at work, but not with the cowboy’s familiar tools of the trade. No sir, these cowboys worked not with lassos or leather straps, but with beakers and pipettes, with shakers and centrifuges.

These fellers know all there is to know about proteins. Until that day, they had been using their hard-earned knowledge and expertise for the development of medicine, a noble venture indeed, but now they would embark on a journey of applying these skills to a venture nobler still; creating plant-based successors of the milk and cheese we love so dearly.

Jaap and Niko had the pleasure of becoming acquainted with Will, the friendly Sheriff in this neck of the woods and the man who would be leading his band of scientific frontiersmen on their newly found mission for the white gold that is vegan dairy. Along with his head honchos Kathleen, Steven and Frank, he’s setting out to investigate and create an animal-friendly alternative to old-fashioned milk and cheese. To this end, these fellers break down the building blocks of milk into their constituent elements, and develop the stuff to replace them with.

These cowboys are hopeful that the fruit of their labors will reveal new ‘n exciting ways to employ yeast and fungi in the synthesis of proteins and casein. This here group of pioneering professors came to calling themselves Those Vegan Cowboys, scientists on a mission for a better world.

Those Vegan Cowboys are dead set on driving the cattle out of our food chain; the logical next step in humanity’s collective development of the dairy industry. From milking by hand back in the day, we took strides towards the future with milking machines, and are now living in a world where fully automated milking robots catch the blisters so we don’t have to. But now that our suffering of the job has lessened with technology, it’s high time for their turn, for the animals whom we have cared for and grown to love all these centuries. Through their hard work and effort in the lab, Those Vegan Cowboys are looking to liberate the cow and replace it with a new milk machine, one that takes grass and turns it into milk. Durable, animal-friendly, and one-hundred percent high grade stainless steel: the first genuine milk robot!

This search won’t be the kind that’s over and done with in a short year or two. In all likelihood, it’ll take years before a true end to this mission is in sight, but Those Vegan Cowboys are nowhere near discouraged by this fact. One day our kids will be sat around the campfire, telling the story of how milk and cheese used to come from animals back in their day, and the youngsters listening wide-eyed won’t be able to imagine such a thing. Fortunately, Jaap and Niko know from personal experience with The Vegetarian Butcher that it sure can take a while before one finds the plant-based egg of Columbus that we’re dreaming of. All the more reason to start searching today. Hi Ho Silver, saddle up, it’s going to be a long, hard ride. Yeehaw!

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