Another promising factor is that cultured meat might reduce food-related health risks: conventional livestock production is known to contribute to the spreading of infectious pathogens like Salmonella and E. coli. Conventional meat often contains antibiotics, growth hormones, pesticides, fungicides, heavy metals, dioxins and even feces – the long list of things that none of us would eat voluntarily.
Producing cultured meat might solve this problem: since it is manufactured under controlled and sterile conditions, it will likely be free from pathogens and diseases. The use of antibiotics and growth hormones could be strongly reduced or even become completely unnecessary, which is why the term “clean meat” is gaining popularity in the English-speaking world.
Cell culturing process allows altering the composition of the final product. This is particularly relevant because high consumption of meat products increases risks of inflammatory and cardiovascular diseases as well as diabetes and cancer. Whilst researchers are not entirely sure which ingredient can be held responsible for this, studies have shown a positive correlation between cancer and heme iron. The production of in-vitro meat might allow eliminating this substance, making lab-grown products healthier and safer to eat. It might be even possible to replace saturated fats with healthier omega-3 fatty acids.
Yuki Hanyu, the co-founder of the Japanese clean meat start-up Integriculture, took this process to the next level and announced that he is working on so-called “green meat”, a cultured meat product, that is enriched with algae.
Finally, cellular agriculture allows producing far more meat than conventional livestock production: The cells of one single cow can provide us with an amount of beef which would save about 440 000 cows. The stem cells of one single turkey could produce enough muscle tissue for 20 trillion turkey nuggets.