Humane Society International/India and the Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology, one of the country’s premier institutions for scientific research, have joined together to develop and promote a laboratory grown meat in India. Called “clean meat,” it is touted to be the next revolution in the way meat is produced.
By collaborating with the Atal Incubation Centre under CCMB, the partnership looks to promote the technology to develop clean meat while bringing start-ups and regulators together under the same roof.
The effort to develop clean meat has emerged due to the unsustainable methods of large-scale industrial animal agriculture. The current intensive practices neglect basic animal welfare, and consequently pose a threat to the environment and food security.
For consumers who have a dietary preference for animal meat clean meat can be consumed, while eliminating the drawbacks of the current meat consumption trends. Clean meat production requires far less land and water than conventional meat production and therefore alleviates repercussions of exponential climatic change. Clean meat technology obliterates the severe environmental damages resulting from poor waste management prevalent in current farming practices. The technology does not require antibiotics, produces no bacterial contamination and ensures the welfare of animals.
Dr. Rakesh Mishra, Director, CCMB said; “While technology exists to multiply literally any type of cell, including mammalian cells, the scaling up of the same in a economically affordable manner as a meat substitute remains a major challenge. There may also be cultural and social factors that will need to be addressed for this to be socially acceptable. Scaling up of cell multiplication at industrial scale is also desirable for upcoming era of bio-actives and bio-therapeutics that are expected to replace the chemical drugs in future. “Clean meat” grown ex-vivo also offers possibility of augmentation of the nutritional value by using genome editing technology and synthetic biology approaches.”
N.G. Jayasimha, managing director for HSI/India, said: “This is history in making. Clean meat technology is taking the world by storm with even the biggest meat producers investing in companies developing clean meat. It is time India begins this dialogue, and we are honoured to have CCMB partner with us for first step we take in this direction. We are also grateful to Good Food Institute India for guiding us with their expertise on the technology.”