Making guilt-free meat without slaughtering animals: Here’s how Dutch startup Meatable aims to transform the food industry

Making guilt-free meat without slaughtering animals: Here’s how Dutch startup Meatable aims to transform the food industry

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Human beings, as a species, consume a lot of meat every day and Animal rearing is a resource-intensive task. Aiming to change how we rear animals, and the world in the process, the cell-based meat Dutch startup Meatable has taken new strides.

The Netherlands-based Meatable aims to create 100 percent real meat from a single cell, which means creating food without slaughtering animals. The startup is moving its base to the Biotech Campus Delft where it will have better access to DSM’s expertise in scaling up, product development and food regulations. DSM is a global science-based company that operates in the field of nutrition, health and sustainable living. Read on to know more about how the startup strives to establish itself in the field and what it is up to.

How Meatable differentiates itself from other slaughter-free meat startups?

Based out of Leiden near Amsterdam, Meatable is not the first company to have thought of creating meat in a sustainable manner. However, it uses a patented Opti-Ox cell technology that enables growing a single cell under controlled differentiation into any cell type. This allows the startup to use a “radically better” cell type called a pluripotent stem cell, which is said to have clear cost advantages when producing cell-based meat. In short, the proprietary tech used by the startup is claimed to reduce the costs and make cell-based meat scalable.

Challenges involved in this business segment, and in food regulations?

Most challenges in the business segment where Meatable operates is scaling. The startup says that scaling biological processes is always a challenge. However, by relocating to the DSM Biotech campus, the company’s scaling experts will be able to benefit from the wealth of experience at DSM on this topic. The move is said to enable the company to scale its operations to reach cost parity with traditional meat.

As for the food regulations, the startup is happy to take on the challenges. “When relevant authorities conclude that our meats are safe and delicious to eat, in addition to having a far lower GHG footprint, we are sure consumers can’t wait to try our meats,” says Meatable.

What are your expansion plans?

The only problem creating artificial meat is that it takes time, in the initial stages. Once that’s done and over with, the company can recreate the process in three weeks or lesser time. Meatable plans to have a prototype product ready in the summer of 2020 and will work on making a demo-plant online in 2022.

How do you plan to scaleup?

While scaling up for most startups would be about expanding their business to new venues, Meatable has the big picture in mind. The startup is confident in its use of pluripotent stem cells, which is expected to enable easy scale up to larger bioreactor systems. The stem cells are grown in a bioreactor where they multiply to create tissues for the meat. The company says it is also developing novel ways to make really delicious meat from the cells.

Any other product developments planned for 2019 and beyond?

Meatable is currently focusing its product development on beef and pork. However, it is also working on adding a chicken product line. Additionally, since stem cells can be manipulated to develop into any product like entrecote, pork chops, or even filet mignon.

Stay tuned to Silicon Canals for more updates in the tech startup world.

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