Lab-grown meat has become increasingly popular, especially as more people are craving the taste and texture of real meat minus the cruelty and harm to the environment. Alternative dairy, meat, and seafood companies have been able to raise quite a bit of money, as these more sustainable food options pique the interest and curiosity of investors worldwide. One notable company, Meatable, aims to fast-track its product to market by combining lab-grown meat with plant-based proteins, thereby making “hybrid meat.”
The alternative protein industry consists of two main categories: lab-grown (aka cultivated) meat, which is created from animal cells in test tubes; and plant-based food, which is wholly derived from plants and is meant to mimic the feel, look, and texture of animal-based products. Each comes with its pros and cons, and vegans are more drawn to plant-based meat, whereas typically carnivorous individuals would be more drawn to cell-based meat. Unfortunately, lab-grown meat is currently only available to buy in Singapore and is in development in several other countries.
Source: i24NEWS English/YouTube
By partnering with Singaporean company Love Handle, a plant-based butcher, Meatable hopes to create the first “hybrid meat innovation center” in the world. According to Elysabeth Alfano, the CEO of VegTech Invest, hybrid products can be useful, as they would give you “some of the health benefits” of eating plant-based food with “all the taste” of regular meat. It’s not exactly unheard of to mix real meat with vegetables, which can be a way of tempting omnivores to try something different, or for people who identify as “flexitarians” — i.e., people who sometimes eat vegetarian or vegan in their daily lives.
Even though hybrid meats will indeed contain real meat, this will be overall beneficial to the environment, animals, and people’s health. Of course, the best way to combat climate change, help and save animals, and improve your health is to adopt a fully vegan diet, although not everyone is ready to make that commitment. Also, cultivated and plant-based meat can be expensive, so it’s easy to see why companies like Meatable would opt for cost-saving measures. In addition, many people may be turned off by the idea of eating fully lab-grown meat, so it’s unclear how successful it would be on market. However, Meatable has no plans to cease the development of their cultivated meat, especially since they don’t know how popular this hybrid meat will be. Regardless, it will be interesting to see what kinds of people end up purchasing and enjoying this hybrid meat.
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