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Industrialization and commercialization of a competitive, sustainable and consumer oriented alternative animal protein source

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - Meat4All (Industrialization and commercialization of a competitive, sustainable and consumer oriented alternative animal protein source)

Reporting period: 2020-08-01 to 2021-07-31

Problem being address

Global population is increasing, projected to hit 9.77 billion inhabitants by 2050. Demand for animal protein continues to rise due to this population increase, and factory farming, the largest protein producer, deals with sustainability concerns (e.g. largest producer of Green House Emissions GHE). All these factors are creating a huge business opportunity for alternative food products that meet customer needs of protein intake.
The world population consumes in average 76 grams of meat protein per person per day, 202,000 million tons/year. Moreover, there is also a strong increase of demand, as shown in Figure 1.1 due to new consumption habits in developing countries. The Global Processed Meat Market was worth $450.2 billion in 2016 and is estimated to grow at a CAGR 14.2%, to reach $874.45 billion by 2021. Cultured Meat, the process of producing animal protein by cell culturing in a controlled environment, will create a new market to satisfy this consumers’ demand for animal protein, that will not be addressed by Factory Farming.

In order to successfully take Ethicameat© products into the market and assure market acceptance several challenges must be overcome. The project aims solving the challenge of reducing Ethicameat © production costs while offering a global solution of cell culture media (cell feed) for cell-based industry. This cost efficient and sustainable process will produce highly nutritive Cultured Meat that can be processed by meat processors in the form of well-known processed products easily accepted by consumers.
• Produce Serum Free culture media.
• Production scale-up will bring an unprecedented efficiency to meat industrial production and increasing industry competitiveness, at a similar cost.
• Free of GMO (genetically modified organism), antibiotics, hormones or meat consumption related illnesses.
• Cultivated meat production process emits negligible GHG emissions compared to factory farming.
• Final products will be prepared and a marketing strategy implemented in order to meet customer acceptance.
• Market research demonstrate that consumers are deeply concerned about animal welfare and administrations are developing regulation to assure animal welfare standards. Cultivated Meat is produced without animal slaughtering.

Why it is important for society

Cultured meat will have a broad impact to mitigate the limitations of factory farming that affects society:
• Sanitary impact: Cultured meat does not use antibiotics, widely used in factory farming to promote growth, and a leading cause of the global rise of antibiotic -resistance. Cultured meat provides meat, rich in protein, without the saturated fats found in traditional meat, improving cardiovascular diseases that imply an economic impact and a detriment in people life´s quality. Cultured meat will lower the risk of global pandemics associated to industrial livestock production, saving lives and economic impact.
• Environmental impact: According to the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), animal agriculture is responsible for 14.5% of the world’s total GHG emissions. It is therefore as bad for the environment as the combined impact of transportation that represent a 15%. Methane, whose global warming potential is 25 times greater than that of carbon dioxide, makes up 44% of the animal industry’s total emissions. Cultured meat will help to reduce 35% of expected emission by 2040.
• Societal impact: Cultured meat will ensure the capability to respond to the growth of global meat demand caused by population growth in a sustainable manner, ensuring that meat can reach to all parts of the planet.

Overall Objectives:

In order to overcome the existing challenges and guarantee market adoption, the project has to deliver solutions in TRL8. The final aim is to lead the project to a commercialisation phase, demonstrating the performance in a real industrial production plant and validating the business opportunity. This main goal requires the achievement of the following specific objectives:
• Scale up production process.
• Develop a new recipe to complement basic culture media enabling the substitution of FBS for meat industry.
• Evaluate the performance of cell-based meat on current portfolio and to generate new products to solve the sustainability approach.
• To accomplish approval of cultivated meat by EFSA for human consumption.
• Industrial demonstration. The project will demonstrate a sustainable new protein source alternative with the potential to disrupt the multi-billion processed meat industry and cut GH emissions.
• Business strategies for Meat4All. The project represents a new generation of Cultured Meat products, but this technical progress has to be supported on audacious and thorough business strategies to ensure a successful market take-up.
The period 1 of MEAT4ALL project has allowed the consortium to progress in 3 different areas:

1. To create tasty products that consumers like:
Traditional meat products are always designed to enhance some characteristics of the meat as flavor, texture, color, functionality as jellification capacity, etc. Cultured meat product must be able to reproduce those characteristics as close as possible to the original meat products. During this period different recepies has been developed to create consumer products

2. To have an animal-free culture media
Meat4All produced a Serum Free culture media (peptone supplements cell feed) making possible the substitution of the unethical and unsustainable Fetal Bovine Serum (FBS) commonly used for culturing adherent cells.

3. Production scale up
BF has scaled up Ethicameat production capacity to pilot plant scale with the addition of 300L bioreactors. This production scale up is one of the main objectives of this project. This is a key action in order to demonstrate to customers that the technology is industrially relevant, and a necessary step to go to industrial scale.
For producing Cultured Meat at large scale with the adequate nutritional value, MEAT4ALL will deliver at the end of the project:
• Skeletal muscle cells will proliferate and form tissue while producing an extracellular matrix full of proteins (this is the main nutritive value of meat)..
• Origin of cells will be safe and non-genetically modified in order to achieve EU regulation.
• Culture media will be free of animal origin content (Fetal Bovine Serum-free).
• Process will be economically viable to achieve suitable price final products.
Meat4All has a unique process technology and integration solution to produce consumer products containing Ethicameat in large volumes at affordable cost and to bring them to the market.
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