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posted by mrpg on Friday March 17 2017, @09:49AM   Printer-friendly
from the replicant-food dept.

A company called Memphis Meats has announced that it has developed artificial/synthetic/lab-grown/cultured chicken and duck meat. The company's press release says it plans to sell cultured meat products to consumers as soon as 2021. Duck is identified as key to the mainland China market, which consumes more of it (over 6 billion pounds annually) than the rest of the world combined:

The quest for artificial meat inches forward—the company Memphis Meats announced today it has developed chicken and duck meat from cultured cells of each bird, producing "clean poultry." The firm provided few details, although participants at a tasting reportedly said the chicken tasted like, well, chicken. Below is a repost of a story originally published 23 August 2016 on some of the regulatory challenges and questions facing Memphis Meats and other companies pursuing artificial meats.

[...] So far, none of these synthetic foods has reached the marketplace. But a handful of startup companies in the United States and elsewhere are trying to scale up production. In the San Francisco Bay area in California, entrepreneurs at Memphis Meats hope to have their cell-cultured meatballs, hot dogs, and sausages on store shelves in about 5 years, and those at Perfect Day are targeting the end of 2017 to distribute cow-free dairy products. It's not clear, however, which government agencies would oversee this potential new food supply.

Historically, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) regulates meat, poultry, and eggs, whereas the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) oversees safety and security for food additives. FDA also approves so-called biologics, which include products made from human tissues, blood, and cells, and gene therapy techniques. But emerging biotechnologies may blur those lines of oversight, because some of the new foods don't fit neatly into existing regulatory definitions. "Cellular culture raises a lot of questions," says Isha Datar, CEO of New Harvest, a New York City–based nonprofit founded to support this nascent industry.

To help provide answers, the White House last year launched an initiative to review and overhaul how U.S. agencies regulate agricultural biotechnology [DOI: 10.1126/science.349.6244.131] [DX]. And the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine in Washington, D.C., is working on a broader study of future biotechnology developments and regulation, with a report slated for release at the end of this year. In the meantime, industry leaders are thinking about how their potential lab-based foods might be handled by regulators. One approach, they tell ScienceInsider, is to show that their product is similar to an existing product that testing has already shown to pose no hazards. "Most food regulation is about aligning new products with something that's already recognized as safe," Datar notes.

Related: Producing Beef has the Greatest Impact on the Environment Compared to Other Animal Based Foods
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Would You Try Silicon Valley's Bloody Plant Burger(s)?
Lab-Grown Pork Closer to Reality

Right now, manufactured meat is as real as a flying car.
- Anonymous Coward, 2014

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  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Friday March 17 2017, @11:58AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday March 17 2017, @11:58AM (#480347)

    The nutrient solution probably contains corn and soy that is not even processed by a stomach.

    I'm confused as to how to interpret your sentence and what you are complaining about. Mind enlightening me? By 'not even processed by a stomach' do you mean stuff that our human stomachs can't digest in our stomachs, or do you mean plant material that was not processed previously by a stomach before being turned into meat?

    The first does not make much sense to me because it seems like eating stuff that our bodies do not digest (and thus passes directly to the exit, instead of being stored as fat) would actually be quite helpful to combat obesity. Also corn is frequently associated with corn syrup, which is basically sugar and does get digested and does seems to be one of the causes of obesity and poor health. Putting stuff that into artificial meat would indeed be a problem.

    The second does not make much sense to me either. Do you mean to say that it is important to you that food went through a stomach first before being turned into meat? Because if so, that means you need an animal with a stomach, to turn plant based material into meat over the course of its lifetime. That basically defeats the whole concept of artificial meat, which is to increase efficiency and reduce environmental impact by circumventing that entire wasteful process by growing raw meat in a lab or factory instead.

    As for me, if they can get it where it looks, tastes, feels and smells like meat and contains roughly the same nutrients, then I'll be perfectly happy with artificial meat. That's a big IF of course.