WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF
If you can take the cell from an animal and use it to grow meat in bioreactors then that cell can be from any animal – from T-Rex’s to Porcupines and Pandas … this is a food revolution.
By now you’ll have heard about being able to take the cell from an animal, literally any animal, and then use it to then grow meat – whether it’s chicken nuggets, steaks, salmon or tuna fillets, or even zebra burgers. Well, now in an extension of that trend and following on from a company that made human meat burgers recently because they could lab grown meat company Primeval Foods is planning to bring a whole host of exotic meats to the market, including elephant, lion, and tiger.
But instead of going on a safari and butchering endangered animals the startup is hoping to replicate the gastronomical experience by cultivating cells inside a lab, a new approach that could diners’ lives a lot more exciting in years to come.
The Future of Food, by Keynote Speaker Matthew Griffin
It’s a clever take on the trend — especially considering most of the company’s potential customers have no idea what any of those exotic meats even taste like — and the company has already found a couple of Michelin-starred restaurants in London to preview its dishes, FoodNavigator reports.
The outfit claims that lab meat “allows us to produce food from any species without the expense of nature and animals,” which allows them to “explore what is beyond the tip of the iceberg.” But, as is the case for most if not all other lab-grown meat alternatives, the process still relies on live animals, albeit minimally, for growth hormones. But that’s changing.
“We select a small sample of tissue from the healthiest wild animals; meanwhile, they continue to enjoy their life,” the company says.
While big cats have a “unique amino acid and protein profile,” elephants have more “fattiness in their muscle tissue,” which makes for “an exceptional umami experience,” according to the company.
“We are currently working on: the Siberian tiger, leopard, black panther, Bengal tiger, white lion, lion, and zebra,” said Yilmaz Bora, a managing partner at Primeval Foods.
Primeval Foods isn’t the only company trying to stray from the usual selection of beef and chicken in the rising world of lab-grown meat though, there’s Orbillion Bio, for instance, a startup trying to bring lab-grown elk sausages and even Wagyu sashimi to market.
There’s certainly a growing momentum behind lab-grown meat — but whether consumers will play along and be willing to sample elephant and giraffe meat remains to be seen. And that’s only if they can get the price down to an accessible level, which is already happening – and fast.