Scientists create a new form of meat
Canadian researchers have found a new form of meat. It would have a taste and texture similar to classic meat.
Will this meat be on your plates soon? In Canada, McMaster researchers have developed a new form of cultured meat that promises a taste and texture close to traditional meat. This mock meat was designed by stacking thin sheets of fat and muscle cells in the lab.
The technique used by researchers Ravi Selvaganapathy and Alireza Shahin-Shamsabadi, both from the universitys school of biomedical engineering, is adapted directly from a method used to grow tissue for human transplantation.
The different layers can be stacked into a solid piece of any thickness and adjusted to mimic the fat content and marbling of any other piece of meat. An important difference compared to other artificial meats already imagined. "We create slices of meat. Consumers will be able to buy meat with the percentage of fat of their choice, just as they do with milk," say the scientists.
As they describe in the journal Cells Tissues Organs, the researchers made and cooked a meat sample that they created from rabbit cells. "It tasted like meat," says Ravi Selvaganapathy. There is no reason to think that the same technology would not work for beef, pork or chicken farming, and the model would lend itself well to large-scale production, the researcher notes.
At the origin of this discovery, researchers were affected by the current crisis in the supply of meat. As global demand grows, meat consumption is depleting the earths resources and generating worrying levels of greenhouse gases. "Currently, meat production is not sustainable. There must be another way to create meat," says Ravi Selvaganapathy. Producing viable meat without raising and killing animals would be much more sustainable, more hygienic and there would be much less waste, the researchers say.
Compared to other forms of meat already grown in the lab, the two Canadian researchers believe theirs has the greatest potential to create products that consumers will embrace in their daily lives and enjoy. A project far from being only in the brain of scientists. In fact, to make this idea a reality, they formed a startup to start commercializing this new technology soon.