In a first this week, San Francisco based start-up Eat Just made the first-ever commercial sale of a cultured chicken product to a restaurant in Singapore, which became the first government to approve cultured meat for human consumption.
The entire process up to Eat Just’s major feat of winning over regulators in Singapore to bring its cultured chicken to market came after many months involving the team providing extensive documents and characterisation of its antibiotic-free cultured chicken products and demonstrating the manufacturing operations behind it in 1,200-litre bioreactors.
Cultured meat refers to meat that is prepared artificially in labs by growing animal cells and using plant based proteins to produce animal proteins and thus not slaughtering animals in the process.
From start to finish, the process takes about 14 days to create cultured chicken. That’s faster than traditional chicken, which takes about 45 days to go from chick to slaughter, according to Tetrick, Founder of Eat Just.
To create GOOD Chicken, a small amount of animal cells is taken from poultry. The cells are then fed nutrients like amino acids, carbohydrates, minerals, fats and vitamins — the same types of nutrients that animals needs to grow and multiply, according to Eat Just. From there, the cells are grown into meat at a rapid rate using a bioreactor. (Tetrick compares the process to brewing beer.)
Alternatives to meat is considered for the following reasons: –
- Animal meat products have by far the biggest impact on the planet and the climate per calorie, compared to other food sources, an alternative will be beneficial for the planet.
- Approximately 70 billion chickens, 1.5 billion pigs, 550 million sheep, 460 million goats and 300 million cattle are killed every year to meet the world’s growing demand for meat.
Despite the popularity of plant-based burgers, beef burgers are still overwhelmingly the more popular choice at restaurants.