In a move that could help to transition the farming industry away from its polluting and barbaric roots, the commercial sale of lab grown meat has just been approved in the US.
The phrase ‘farm to fork’ has always been a big thing in the US, but there will soon be another alternative.
Over the weekend, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced that cruelty free meat curated under laboratory conditions is free to go fully commercial.
The company that secured the victory is called Upside Foods and is based in California. Its chicken meat, which can be grown on a large scale with just a few living cells from the actual bird, has become the first to pass through all the red tape.
Like many other lab grown meats in pre-production, this chicken doesn’t involve the slaughter of any animal and bares none of the ecological drawbacks associated with rearing them. For clarity, current food systems account for nearly one third of all global emissions.
Making food more sustainable was a major focus at COP27, which just wrapped up in Egypt. Pasture and cropland occupy half of the planet’s habitable land and use 70% of fresh water supplies – making the industry an ecological menace right up there alongside fossil fuels.
The process of harvesting animal cells and multiplying them within a bioreactor instantly negates almost all of this damage. ‘The US is the first meaningful market that has approved this… this is seismic and ground-breaking,’ said Costa Yiannoulis, a chief at a food technology VC firm Synthesis Capital.