Upside Foods, formerly known as Memphis Meats even though it’s a California company, is a leader in the cultivation (growing) of chicken meat from cells — no clucking, no feathers, no slaughter. Upside calls it “Immortalized Chicken,” which prompted a blog from longtime meat industry executive Mack Graves at Meatingplace.com. Graves opines that it’ll still be a decade before the masses are able to buy cultivated chicken (or beef and pork) at the stores, but it is coming. And he tells WGN’s Steve Alexander that the thing the meat cultivators must get right — which plant-based imitators did not — is taste. Graves says if taste isn’t there, consumers won’t buy it, no matter how much better it makes their consciences feel. He says one smart thing Upside founder Dr. Uma Valeti has done is embrace traditional meat production, not attack it as the plant-based folks have. Upside Foods recently became the first cultivated meat company to receive a nod of awareness from the FDA, the first of many steps potentially leading to full approval. Investors are throwing millions at Upside, including Bill Gates, Richard Branson, Cargill and Tyson Foods.
Photo from UPSIDE Foods
Lab-grown meat may be a big part of the future of feeding the world.