Would you eat meat grown in a lab?

Jon Lawson

Aleph Farms has claimed it has created steaks just like real meat, with the same aroma, flavour and texture. The company is using a process of tissue regeneration similar to that which occurs in the animal's body, but outside of it and under controlled conditions. It is designed to use a fraction of the resources required for raising an entire animal for meat, and without antibiotics.

The company is copying the extra-cellular matrix found in animals with a plant-based matrix that enables the cells to grow and form structured tissue. Its ‘cell-banks’ yield a source of pluripotent, non-GMO cells, without needing living animals.

Co-founder Didier Toubia explained, “One of the big challenges of cultivated meat is the ability to produce large quantities efficiently at a cost that can compete with conventional meat industry pricing, without compromising on quality. We have developed five technological building blocks unique to Aleph Farms that are put into a large-scale production process, all patented by the company.”

“It's not enough to just make a protein that will fill the nutritional gap; we need to capture the fullness of the meat-eating experience. Meat can be cultivated from cells isolated from different animal breeds, have different cuts, and it elicits different emotions. We see Aleph Farms as crafters of experiences.”

If things go to plan, the company will be bringing its product to market at the end of 2022.

• Read more about the future of food production here.