One day, a type 2 civilization with a taste for unusual meat stumble across earth. They then capture every human being on earth and take them to a planet where they are placed until they are eventually killed off and sold to every supermarket in the galaxy. And the females are also used for there milk which can always be found in aisle three in the dairy section.

What would be the best way to butcher human meat and most efficiently?

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    $\begingroup$ you may want to read "bordered in black" by larry niven. similar premise. $\endgroup$ – John Jan 6 '18 at 16:00
  • $\begingroup$ there is a larry niven story called bordered in black about a human farming planet. $\endgroup$ – John Nov 29 '18 at 4:39
  • $\begingroup$ A terrific short story on this topic (from the point of view of alien foodies) is Kuszib by Hassan Abdulrazzak. In this anthology: goodreads.com/book/show/34759977-iraq-100 $\endgroup$ – Cyn says make Monica whole Nov 29 '18 at 16:00

a type 2 civilization

These would be people with the ability to make black holes from light ? Own their own Dyson Swarm and so on ?

Seems very unlikely a type II civilization would need to slaughter actual animals to eat. It's practically a given they'd be able to manufacture meat that was indistinguishable from the real thing.

I was asking what would be the best way to butcher and collect the meat and most efficiently

Most efficiently ?

Grow your own "steaks" in a factory using advanced biochemistry or cloning technology or some technique. This avoids the slaughtering problem, the disposal of unwanted bits and the need to worry about breeding animals (always messy and terribly inefficient :-) ). Likewise milk.

And I'm trying hard to imagine a reason a completely alien species would not find human meat and milk actually dangerous to eat, never mind like it. And I'm failing.

So no butcher, just a large biochemical plant doing complex things with advanced techniques available to your average Type II civilization.

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    $\begingroup$ Don't be silly. We can make perfectly acceptable veggie burgers that even taste like meat. And you know what, I won't eat them. I want a cow slaughtered to satiate my appetite, and these KII aliens won't be any different. $\endgroup$ – kingledion Jan 6 '18 at 5:03
  • $\begingroup$ Wait I thought type 2 civilizations were the ones that could collect all the available energy on their planets. $\endgroup$ – Bryan Jan 6 '18 at 5:04
  • $\begingroup$ The Kardashev Scale in all it's glory. :-) Even type I ought to have developed synthetic meat production methods, particularly with all that energy to play with. $\endgroup$ – StephenG Jan 6 '18 at 5:12
  • $\begingroup$ Oh yeah that makes a lot of sense $\endgroup$ – Bryan Jan 6 '18 at 5:14
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    $\begingroup$ @kingledion The main reason people eat meat instead of artificial products in a combination of habit, normal reluctance to try anything different and price - my experience is that you can get cheap meat but vegetarian alternatives are more expensive. That's unlikely to be an issue for a Type I or II civilization. $\endgroup$ – StephenG Jan 6 '18 at 5:14

Humans are expensive creatures to keep. Slave holding was already dying in hte US when the civil war erupted because it was not economical in the long run.

However, the easy way to farm humans is to leave them in place, then harvest a fixed percentage on a regular basis.

Having never tasted human meat (apart from my own fingers burnt when soldering too inattentively) I would presume that there is a "best age" for the harvesting. Typically, farm animals are harvested as young adults. The ideal venue for harvesting, then, is (drumroll ...) high school. Lure the "favored" graduates into your slaughterhouse with the right incentives and then the rest is much like any cattle slaughter operation.

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    $\begingroup$ But I find it strange that you have never eaten human $\endgroup$ – Bryan Jan 6 '18 at 4:46
  • $\begingroup$ Not that I'll admit to anyways. $\endgroup$ – pojo-guy Jan 6 '18 at 4:51
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    $\begingroup$ Well I’m starting a humanitarian diet we’re I eat only human meats $\endgroup$ – Bryan Jan 6 '18 at 4:56
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    $\begingroup$ Please take the ball team and cheerleaders first. $\endgroup$ – Martin James Jan 6 '18 at 16:42

Harvest after a growth spurt

Here is a graph of human mass gain by year.

enter image description here

There seem to be two best times. Either harvest after the steady childhood development phase, at age 6-8; or harvest after the adolescent growth sport finishes around age 15 for females and 18 for males.

However, humans waste a lot of time and energy developing big brains. If you are really a Kardashev II civilization, you might do better breeding something that grows faster for the taste you want. Assuming that there is something in primate genetics that tastes good, a gorilla might be a better bet. They will grow to ~70 kg for a female and ~135kg for a male in only 10 years; plus they are easier to feed on a cheap, all-vegetation diet.

Also, you are going to hell for making me think about eating 6 year old children. Teenagers are fine though, no one would miss them.

  • $\begingroup$ Kingledion, the aliens want a lot more meat and the population of gorillas is very low. I guess it would be very plausible that they could clone the gorillas but this was sadly not the answer I was looking fir $\endgroup$ – Bryan Jan 6 '18 at 5:07
  • $\begingroup$ Kingledion I’m technically a teenager $\endgroup$ – Bryan Jan 6 '18 at 5:21
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    $\begingroup$ @Bryan Yum..... $\endgroup$ – kingledion Jan 6 '18 at 5:22
  • $\begingroup$ Well in about 6 months I’ll turn 20 so $\endgroup$ – Bryan Jan 6 '18 at 5:23
  • $\begingroup$ @Kingledion: Cloning could solve that problem, making it unnecessary to kill even a single wild gorilla. Reproductive gorilla cloning would allow the aliens to sample every edible part of a gorilla's body. Selective organ cloning would allow the most desirable gorilla parts to be grown in tanks. $\endgroup$ – James Grossmann Jan 6 '18 at 14:38

Don't take all the humans - take a subset (kidnap babies, or even kidnap humans, harvest eggs and sperm and create a first, clean slate generation) , bring them elsewhere and and create a primitive society. Have periodic sacrifices to the gods with humans or milk.

Unlike most livestock, you can probably get them to grow their own food and feed themselves and just periodically skim your product off the top.

Modern humans are too likely to rebel and you don't really need to ship humanity elsewhere. I'd actually suggest protecting your market by keeping other races away from earth, and keeping the humans from going too far away, while you run your primitive human farms.


The question of efficiently harvesting humans for a type II civilization is somewhat strange since, at least I, would not expect such a civilization to be bothered that much with efficiency.

That being said, one of the most efficient ways would be to keep them (us) like cattle. Keep them indoor and separately or in small groups and add mind numbing and reproductive drugs to the water supply and put them on a high fat diet or what the alien prefer. Without group interaction and after some generation you can breed preferable qualities, docility, etc. The efficient butchering can be done per group the same as cattle.

A little bit more technology minded would be to use the same method as shown in the matrix. Just keep the humans asleep in the pods and add the appropriate nutrients. Depending on the civilization this might be more efficient.


This concept already exists (The Wraith in Stargate Atlantis).

However, if you REALLY want to reinvent the weel, I suggest that your aliens do it the same way that the Wraith do it: harvest a fixed percentage every x years, and then let the supply regrow.


What would be the best way to butcher human meat and most efficiently or what would be the most efficient way to farm humans?

These are two completely different questions

Free-range humans is the easiest.

  1. Leave the humans on Earth.
  2. Start "Move to a new planet Corp LTD"
  3. Offer free land grants for new settlers on a planet 1500 light years away
  4. Pop your willing settlers in their cryochambers / the snack freezer
  5. Profit

People will leave expecting to never return and they'll bring their whole families or just themselves if they have no-one.

This will leave more room on Earth for more humans to breed, your snacks will freeze themselves and there is no communication with a planet so far away so nobody will notice for thousands of years that they're even missing.

Just imagine the poor of China, Africa or India that have no land and no future. You'll have huge waiting lists to fill your snack cupboards up.

Health checks and immigration rules means the beef will grade itself.

It's food that farms itself.....


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