Beef could have new competition in the market. And it is that a company of Australia unveiled a meatball made from lab-grown meat using the genetic sequence of the now-extinct mammothassuring that it was manufactured to fuel public debate.
The founder of the Australian startup ‘Vow’, Tim Noakesmith, assured that it is not “a joke. This is true innovation”, referring to the fact that it was not a ‘joke’ for the first of April, which is celebrated as Fool’s Day in many countries.
As specified by AP, which spread this curious news, cultured meat is made from animal cells. This type of product does not “need to kill cattle for its production, which is why the activists assure that it is better, not only for the animal, but also for the environment.”
Noakesmith explained that his company used publicly available genetic information from the mammoth and then filled in the missing parts with genetic data from its closest living relative: the African elephant. Subsequently, she inserted all this into a sheep cell, where, under the right conditions in a laboratory, the cells managed to multiply until they reached enough numbers to make the meatball.
Today, more than 100 companies around the world are working on cultured meat products, many of them startups like Vow.
This news is very positive as experts point out that if this technology is adopted on a large scale, it could greatly reduce the environmental impact of global meat production in the future.
Let’s remember that around the world millions of hectares are used for agriculture and livestock, not to mention the gases that pollute the environment in this type of company.
However, so far Singapore is the only country in the world that has approved cultured meat for human consumption, so this type of meat is still a long way from reaching the diet of the general population.
The Mammoth Meatball is a one-time thing and has not been tested, even by its creators, and is not scheduled to go into commercial production. Instead, it was pitched as a protein source that will spark the debate about the future of meat.
“We wanted to get people excited about the future of food being different than it used to be. That there are things that are unique and better than the meats that we are consuming right now out of necessity, and we thought that the mammoth would be a good point to start this conversation and get people excited about this new future.”Noakesmith told The Associated Press.