Lab-Grown ‘Clean’ Meat Could Enter Food Market By The End Of 2018
-by Fattima Mahdi
In an effort to solve environmental problems and reduce our dependence on animals for meat, ‘clean’ meat products are being produced in the lab. A San Francisco based startup called JUST has already been producing and selling non-animal foods like mayonnaise, they also recently launched ‘Just Egg’ which contains the mung bean – a 4,400 year-old legume that magically scrambles like an egg.
“In tomorrow’s world you can eat more meat, hopefully safer meat, even better tasting meat, without eating the animal, said Joshua Tetrick, co-founder and CEO of JUST. “We’re one part pharma, one part biotech and whole bunch of regular food company. We built a discovery system that has the only patent in the world that utilizes machine learning for food ingredient discovery.”
While some companies are pursuing plant-based food alternatives, JUST is developing lab grown animal tissue, using a single sample from a single animal which can be duplicated infinitely – this is known as cultured or ‘clean’ meat. The futuristic foods company are already disrupting the livestock industry and hope to have meat products restaurant-ready by the end of this year.
For more detailed information on how meat is grown in the lab, watch Hashem Al-Ghaili’s video here
With lab-grown meat products heading for the U. S. market, there are growing concerns about how they’ll be regulated. “The kind of inspection that would take place at a slaughterhouse today is not the type of expertise that would be required in the inspection of a cultured meat facility,” says Isha Datar, executive director of the nonprofit research institute New Harvest in New York City. “We’re finding there aren’t even real standards about what makes a chicken muscle cell a chicken muscle cell,” she says. “There’s actually an enormous amount of things that we would have to clarify in order to say that [lab-grown meat] is equivalent to the animal products that we are familiar with.”
‘Clean’ meat has been positioned as a viable alternative for consumers who want meat-based products without the health risks that are associated with it. Cultured meat producers are able to control what type of fat goes into the meat. For example, they can grow meat that contains omega-3 and fatty acids which have a number of health benefits. With the world’s population expected to reach a whopping 9 billion by 2050, many scientists believe that ‘clean’ meat could meet the world’s meat demand.
Image credit: kesu87 / 123RF Stock Photo
Written by: Fattima Mahdi
Fattima Mahdi is a author, mentor, lyricist and professional roller-skater. She uses both her love for writing and music to address socio-political issues prevalent in society today. She is also the proud author of Love Don’t Come Easy.Read More stories by Fattima Mahdi