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Singapore approves sale of lab-grown meat in world first

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Singapore to help high-tech farming and new means of meals manufacturing.

Singapore has given U.S. start-up Eat Just the greenlight to promote its lab-grown rooster meat, in what the agency says is the world’s first regulatory approval for so-called clear meat that doesn’t come from slaughtered animals.

The meat, to be offered as nuggets, might be priced at premium rooster costs when it first launches in a restaurant in Singapore “in the very near term”, co-founder and CEO Josh Tetrick mentioned.

Demand for alternate options to common meat is surging resulting from considerations about well being, animal welfare and the surroundings. Plant-based substitutes, popularised by the likes of Beyond Meat, Impossible Foods and Quorn, more and more function on grocery store cabinets and restaurant menus.

But so-called clear or cultured meat, which is grown from animal muscle cells in a lab, remains to be at a nascent stage given excessive manufacturing prices.

Singapore, a metropolis state of 5.7 million, at present solely produces about 10% of its meals however has set out formidable plans to boost that over the subsequent decade by supporting high-tech farming and new means of meals manufacturing.

Josh Tetrick mentioned the San Francisco-based agency was additionally speaking to U.S. regulators however that Singapore was a “good bit” forward of the United States.

“I would imagine what will happen is the U.S., Western Europe and others will see what Singapore has been able to do, the rigours of the framework that they put together. And I would imagine that they will try to use it as a template to put their own framework together,” he mentioned in an interview.

The Singapore Food Agency mentioned it had reviewed information referring to course of, manufacturing management and security testing earlier than granting approval.

Eat Just mentioned it should manufacture the product in Singapore, the place it additionally plans to start out making a mung bean-based egg substitute it has been promoting commercially in the United States.

Founded in 2011, Eat Just counts Hong Kong tycoon Li Ka-shing and Singapore state investor Temasek amongst its backers. It has raised greater than $300 million since its inception, Tetrick mentioned, and is valued at roughly $1.2 billion.

It is concentrating on profitability at an working earnings degree earlier than the top of 2021 and hopes to go public quickly after, he added.

Globally greater than two dozen companies are testing lab-grown fish, beef and rooster, hoping to interrupt into an unproven phase of the choice meat market, which Barclays estimates might be price $140 billion by 2029.

Competitors have additionally attracted some eye-catching traders.

U.S.-based Memphis Meats raised funds this 12 months in a deal led by Japan’s SoftBank Group and Temasek, and likewise counts Bill Gates and Richard Branson amongst its backers.

Singapore’s Shiok Meats, which goals to change into the first firm to promote lab-grown shrimp, is backed by Henry Soesanto of Philippines’ Monde Nissin Corp, which additionally owns Quorn.

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