My friend asked me about the "Scientists Grow Pork Meat in a Lab, Annoying PETA People To Disappear Soon" article about how scientists have grown pork in a test tube, and whether growing meat from an otherwise kosher animal would render the meat treif or kosher.
I saw this and I was thinking the same thing... It's a very interesting kashrut question. I was asking myself whether it would even be considered meat...
Without ANY certainty, my best guess is that rabbis would have to look at the underlying animal to determine whether it was kosher or not and make their determination from there, no? If they're growing the meat from the DNA or the cells of a pig, it would be treif. If they're growing the meat from a cow, a giraffe, or any other kosher animal, as you said, now THERE'S the question -- can we eat meat that hasn't been slaughtered properly because there has been no need for slaughter!
Assuming they can monitor to certify that all the ingredients, ovens, and utensils used in the preparation of the meat from the kosher animal were also kosher, my best guess is that the cow would be just as kosher as, say, kosher pretzels.
My best guess would be yes it would probably be kosher. It would be really COOL to hear the arguments if this sort of thing ended up being the norm on how meat is prepared.
PS - From the conspiratorial point of view, do you think the big agribusiness companies would ALLOW the demise of their operations? "Growing meat" would absolutely kill their CORN and SOY business, as most of the corn goes to feed the livestock to produce the meat. Then, with the live animal farming becoming extinct (as it certainly would if farms growing meat rather than live animals), what would happen to the underlying animals who formerly were thrown into cages and slaughtered? Would they now be free to roam and to eat grass? I'm guessing that the organic market for live animals would then also prosper, although the meat would be comparatively significantly more expensive than the test-tube meat that they can produce en mass.