"Clean Meat" Approved By Regulators in Singapore With Other Nations to Follow Soon
The first lab-grown, or cultured meat product, often called "clean meat," has been approved for sale to the public. Regulators in Singapore granted "Eat Just," a San Francisco based company, the right to sell cultured chicken in the form of chicken nuggets. It's the world’s first regulatory approval for a meat product that does not come from slaughtered animals.
Illuminate: "Clean Meat" is one of the names that has been given to the process of using animal cells to grow real meat in a lab, replacing slaughter houses and reducing our carbon footprint. It sounds a bit like science fiction but it's already here and you will see clean meat [also called cultured meat] products in restaurants and grocery stores in the not so distant future. It has the potential to change the world."
Singapore was an inspired choice to conduct the first regulatory evaluation of a cultured meat product because they currently have to import 90% of their food supply and have been looking for ways to become more self sufficient. But, America and the European Union won't be far behind. And, Josh Tetrick of Eat Just believes Singapore's regulatory process will expedite the approval process.
World Economic Forum: “I would imagine what will happen is the U.S., Western Europe and others will see what Singapore has been able to do, the rigours of the framework that they put together. And I would imagine that they will try to use it as a template to put their own framework together.”
MIT Tech Review: “We are hoping and expecting that the US, China, and the EU will pick up the gauntlet that Singapore just threw down,” says Bruce Friedrich, executive director of the Good Food Institute, a nonprofit that works in meat alternatives. “Nothing is more important for the climate than a shift away from industrial animal agriculture.”
Some of the world's wealthiest companies and individuals are betting that clean meat is the future and will help address some of our thorniest global challenges.
Illuminate: In 2013 Dr. Mark Post of Maastricht University cooked and ate the first cultured meat burger in front of journalists gathered in London. Just seven years later, there are more than a dozen companies, across the globe, competing to get a variety of clean meat products to market. And the growing industry has some high profile backers including Bill Gates, Tyson Foods, Google co-founder Sergey Brin, and Richard Branson, who just made a big investment in Memphis Meats.
They understand that the potential benefits of embracing cultured meat and abandoning the slaughterhouse meat economy are overwhelming:
1. About 70 billion animals are killed each year for food and most of us would prefer not to think about the slaughterhouses involved in getting us our beef, poultry and pork products. Perhaps in the future we can enjoy meat without the guilt.
2. Cultured meat will be created in labs/plants using a small percentage of the land that is currently utilized to raise livestock. That will free-up millions of acres for plant agriculture, homes and wild animal habitat. This benefit will be especially crucial as the world's population grows beyond 9 billion by 2050.
3. Cultured meat is produced in a sterile environment, reducing food-borne illnesses. Moreover, clean meat will be produced without the overuse of antibiotics or artificial growth hormones.
4. According to the United Nations, animal agriculture produces 15% of all greenhouse gases. The production of clean meat creates 95-96% less of the pollutants responsible for climate change.
5. The agriculture needed to produce feed for livestock involves the use of large quantities of pesticides and fertilizers which pollute our rivers and oceans, and kill marine life and coral reefs.
6. Especially in developing nations, animal agriculture is the driving force behind deforestation as ranchers clear rain-forest to raise cattle. That is the leading cause of biodiversity loss in regions like the Amazon.
Probably no other innovation contemplated today has the potential to so positively impact the global economy and human health. Bruce Friedrich, of the Good Food Institute, believes we need "a space-race-type commitment toward making meat from plants or growing it from cells. We need a Manhattan Project focused on remaking meat.”
By: Don Lam & Curated Content