According to Reuters, the US Department of Agriculture has cleared two businesses, Upside Foods and Good Meat, to sell their lab-grown meat products, making them the first brands to be licensed for sale in the country.
More specifically, the USDA approval takes the form of an inspection grant. The grant technically indicates that the firms’ meat-processing facilities are in conformity with the agency’s criteria and will be examined on a regular basis. As a result, their items may now be sold widely.
With this key regulatory obstacle passed, the United States is now only the second country in the world, after Singapore, to allow the sale of lab-grown products.
Lab-grown, or “cultivated” meat, is touted as a more ethical alternative to traditional one because no animals are killed or harmed to create it. As the name implies, this is created in bioreactors using real animal cells. And depending on who you ask, it sort of tastes like the real thing, too.
However, despite claims of being a more “sustainable” alternative, at least one research claims that present techniques of cultivated production aren’t much greener than procuring meat from killed livestock. However, the study concedes, that this could be vastly improved in the future.
No one, according to industry leaders, has found out how to scale up manufacturing while keeping costs acceptable. So it will be a long time, if ever, before you see lab-grown meat in your local grocery.
Reference- BBC, Futurism, Reuters, PR Newswire