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Cultivated Meat Nears US Approval

Specialty Food Association

Lab-grown meat, also known as cultivated or cultured meat, is gradually receiving domestic support, reports ABC News. Advocates indicate the industry is on the cusp of a milestone.

Over the last few months, the FDA has cleared two American producers of cultivated meats to bring their products to market. The two companies only seek USDA approval before they can start being sold in the U.S. The Department is currently deciding how to label the meat product and inspect facilities that approve it, with guidelines expected to be released this year.

"That is a watershed moment because it's never happened before in the history of humanity," said Dr. Uma Valeti, founder and CEO of Upside Foods, one of the approved producers.

Lab-grown meat is the process wherein meat is made from extracted animal cells by introducing a mixture of vitamins, fats, sugars, and oxygen. The process removes the need to raise or harm animals and is seen as more environmentally conscious, as it minimizes greenhouse gas emissions in the meat industry.

The movement has many advocates, including animal rights activists and the Biden Administration. But critics are dubious of the economic toll.

"The data's not there yet and the investment is known to be very expensive. How are you going to make an impact in the environment if you cannot scale this at a reasonable cost?" said Ricardo San Martin, director of the Alternative Meat Lab at the University of California at Berkeley. Full Story

Related: Cultivated Meat Company Passes FDA Hurdle; Good Meat to Streamline Cultivated Meat Production