There have been talks about lab-grown meat for a while now and while the concept and technology aren’t really new, the fact that things are stepping up is a sign that this might become more of a reality than we could ever have expected.
Memphis Meats has hatched a plan to create lab-grown chicken and duck. This might sound strange to some, but it is also an interesting concept that could change the way meat is eating around the world. A tasting took place recently, where Memphis Meats did serve lab-grown chicken strips that were battered and fried, along with lab-grown duck a l’orange and according to a report in Wall Street Journal, the tasters said that the product tastes just like chicken.
How does this chicken become a reality? In a conversation with Eater, Memphis Meats senior scientist Eric Schulze explained the process: “We start by harvesting cells from high-quality, living chickens that might otherwise go into conventional meat. The chickens are not killed in the process. We look for cells that have potential to renew, put them in an environment where they can grow and feed them water and nutrients — vitamins, minerals, proteins, sugars — and let them grow.” It could take the harvested cells anywhere between four to six weeks to grow into fleshed-out chicken tenders.
In 2015, Memphis Meats crowdfunded a mission to grow clean meat and since has introduced lab-grown meatballs and they’re now also looking to grow a Thanksgiving turkey in the lab. With a total of $3 million raised and plans to continue conversations with investors in the coming months, Memphis Meats lab-grown poultry and beef should be available in supermarkets by 2021.
While there’s further information on whether or not this kind of meat will reach other parts of the world, it’s still a waiting game to see how everything turns out for America before it goes any further. However, it is still quite the intriguing concept and one that we can’t ignore.