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"SF looks towards an imaginary future, while fantasy, by and large, looks towards an imaginary past."
- Frederik Pohl

Yeast Steak  
  Growing custom strains of yeast as food.  

...These strains of yeast have each their peculiar properties. The beef steak you thought you ate today was yeast. The frozen fruit confection you had for dessert was iced yeast. We have filtered yeast juice with the taste, appearance, and all the food value of milk.

It is flavor, more than anything else, you see, that makes yeast feeding popular and for the sake of flavor we have developed artificial, domesticated strains that can no longer support themselves on a diet of salts and sugar. One needs biotin; another needs pteroylglutamic acid; still others need seventeen different amino acids...

Technovelgy from The Evitable Conflict, by Isaac Asimov.
Published by Astounding Science Fiction in 1950
Additional resources -

Compare to scop from Bruce Sterling's 1988 novel Islands in the Net and the yeast-beast machine from David Brin's 1994 novel Natulife and crop algae from James Blish's 1957 novel Cities in Flight. And don't forget protine from Philip K. Dick's 1955 novel Solar Lottery.

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  More Ideas and Technology from The Evitable Conflict
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Science Fiction in the News

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'One building now gushed forth smoke and another stench that was unmistakable.'

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'...we've promised him a generous pension from the royalties.'

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'Provision had been made to meet the terrific cold which we knew would be encountered the moment we had passed beyond the atmosphere.'

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'You are who we say you are, Dr. Dakin,' Turner said.'

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'It's area, and its consequent light-gathering capacity, was many times greater than any rigid mirror...'

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'Tell me your torments,' the Padre said, in an elderly voice marked with compassion.

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'...a slender-legged tripod surmounted by a spherical body no larger than a football.'

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