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“Lab-Grown” Meat – Higher Steaks Makes A Move For The Global Pork Market

June 21, 2023


Higher Steaks, a U.K.-based start-up has recently raised $30 million to develop cultivated bacon and pork belly products, looking to take on the $250 billion global pork market.

These “cultivated meats” are grown in anything from a test tube to a stainless steel bioreactor in a process borrowed from research into regenerative medicine. The cells are taken from the animal through a harmless biopsy and mixed with a solution called a “growth medium” containing salts, proteins and carbohydrates.

Consumers may be drawn to such cultivated meat products for a variety of reasons including animal welfare and environmental benefits. However, we will not know if cultivated meats benefit the environment until mass production is underway. A 2019 University of Oxford study concluded that “cultured meat is not prima facie clinically superior to cattle; its relative impact instead depends on the availability of decarbonized energy generation on the specific production systems that are realized.”

Regulatory hurdles could cause problems for Higher Steaks, who is rebranding as “Uncommon” after the new funding. Singapore is currently the only market in the world where cultured meat is able to be sold. With the FDA delivering its second “no questions” clearance to brand Good Meat, it appears the regulatory landscape in the U.S. is changing.

It could be a long road for players in this space but investors seem optimistic. With participation from a number of institutional and angel investors, Uncommon plans to use the injection of capital to scale production and kick-start its regulatory approval process in Europe and Singapore while keeping a close eye on the U.S. market.

Griffin James


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