Cultivated Pork — From Cell To Sausage in Just 8 Days
Sunday, May 28th, 2023 | 3332 Views
Meatable has just had a groundbreaking moment — they can now create delicious, tasty cultivated pork sausages in only eight days — less than 5% of the time needed to rear a pig on a farm.
A decade ago, researchers realised that it was possible to create cultivated meat, or meat grown from the cell of a living organism. However, the price tag was hefty, and it was not feasible to be mass produced.
Meatable was founded in 2018 with the mission of creating delicious cultivated meat products without harming people, animals, or the planet.
Meat has been part of our diet since the dawn of time. Apart from providing us with essential nutrients, it is also an important part of our lives that many cannot do without, be it due to personal preferences or religious reasons. Meat is so ingrained our lives that the food industry has developed a fairly optimised production process compared to other types of food. However, animal farming contributes to deforestation and greenhouse gas emissions. As the demand for meat continues to grow with an increasing global population, a sustainable solution is needed.
Meatable believes cultivated meat is the solution. It doesn’t require large-scale dietary changes, it provides the same nutrients and taste as conventional meat and it relies on scientifically proven techniques that have long been used in the pharmaceutical industry.
To create Meatable’s cultivated meat, a single animal cell is isolated, taken harmlessly from an animal. While immortalised cell lines are more commonly found in the industry, they require an alteration of the cells to allow them to multiply indefinitely. Meatable’s technology is instead based on pluripotent stem cells (PSCs), which have the natural ability to keep on multiplying and to do so rapidly. In this process, the doubling time is only 24 hours. Meanwhile, the difficulty with using PSCs is that it can be more challenging to change them from stem cells into more specialised cells, such as muscle or fat. However, by using these cells in combination with Meatable’s patented opti-ox technology, they’re able to produce real muscle and fat cells that are fully differentiated in just days.
The Same Taste and Texture As Conventional Meat, Without Guilt
Meatable’s cultivated meat cells are indistinguishable from traditional muscle and fat cells. By using PSCs in thier processes, it allows the creation of the right level of fibre formation, protein and fat accumulation in the cells that are similar to those in traditional pork. This gives meat its pronounced flavour and bite so that when someone tries a Meatable cultivated pork sausage or dumpling, or even delicious pulled pork, salami and pork belly, they are enjoying the same taste, texture and nutritional value of conventional meat, minus the guilt.
World’s First Hybrid Meat Innovation Centre to be Built in Singapore
Meatable is building the world’s first Future of Meat innovation centre for harm-free meat with Asia’s first plant-based butcher Love Handle. The innovation centre will develop hybrid products, indistinguishable from real meat and containing a combination of cultivated meat and plant-based materials.
With a shared vision to create products to satisfy the world’s growing demand for meat without harming the environment, the two will collaborate on developing hybrid meat products — using both cultivated meat and plant-based materials to develop innovative foods that are indistinguishable from real meat. The innovation centre will be located in Singapore with the aim to serve the global market.
Innovating the Future of Meat
The Future of Meat innovation centre will be the first kitchen and innovation lab dedicated to developing and innovating world-class hybrid alternative protein products and associated intellectual property. It will house some of the best machinery and materials to drive next-level innovation in hybrid meat and plant-based products. The two companies will launch the centre sometime in 2023, and will jointly invest around $6 million and employ a team in Singapore.
On top of food-innovation kitchen equipment like high-end blenders, mixers and emulsification equipment, the lab will also include bespoke equipment designed specifically for the development of cell and plant alternative protein innovations. These include high moisture extrusion equipment and industrial texture and taste analyzers to optimise recipes. The lab will have the capacity for small-scale production.
Investing in Singapore
The partnership with Love Handle is the next step in Meatable’s expansion in Singapore and was brought together by the Singapore Economic Development Board (EDB), a government organisation tasked with supporting Singapore’s position as a leading innovation hub. The country was the first to approve cultivated meat in 2020 as part of its 30 by 30 strategy, which aims to build up its agri-food industry’s capability and capacity by producing 30% of its nutritional needs locally and sustainably by 2030.
Ken Kuguru, co-founder and CEO of Love Handle, said: “The new innovation centre we’re setting up with Meatable will help us develop new hybrid and plant-based meat products as well as provide a space for existing plant-based players to further drive innovation in the food industry. We’re looking forward to working closely with Meatable and for consumers to be able to try these new and exciting products by 2023.”
This follows the announcement last month that Meatable is partnering with the CMDO ESCO Aster, the first and only global production facility with regulatory approval to produce cultivated meat, to produce Meatable’s cultivated pork products in Singapore. They aim to launch products like pork dumplings and sausages in selected restaurants in 2024. This marks the next step in Meatable’s mission to create meat that serves the planet’s growing appetite without harming people, animals or the environment. These partnerships are part of Meatable’s wider plans in Singapore, which will invest over $60m and employ more than 50 people over the next five years.
Driving Innovation in the Food Industry with Cultivated Pork
Meatable is committed to investing in products and countries to enable the growth of cultivated meat, in what is predicted to become a $25 billion industry by 2030. In the future, Meatable believes cultivated meat will be available on supermarket shelves and in restaurants along with plant-based products.
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