Meatly Lick

Source: Meatly

The development marks a crucial step towards cultivated meat being commercially viable for supermarket shelves

Cultivated meat company Meatly has announced the development of a groundbreaking protein-free culture medium, which it claims is the first of its kind for the industry.

The development marks a crucial step towards cultivated meat being commercially viable for supermarket shelves, as the medium created by Meatly costs just £1 to produce per litre, unlike previous media which cost hundreds of pounds.

The medium, which is a mix of nutrients used by companies in the cultivated industry to grow animal cells, is essential to the production process of cultivated meat and accounts for the majority of costs involved. Reducing these costs has been a “major hurdle” for the sector as it worked to achieve parity with meat, the business said.

“Meatly’s creation of the very first protein-free medium establishes the company as a true technological leader within its field,” said investor in Meatly and founder of Agronomics, Jim Mellon. “Media accounts for the majority of costs involved in the production of cultivated meat, and Meatly has single-handedly slashed those costs a hundredfold or more.”

“This is a huge step forward in bringing the cost of cultivated meat to price parity with conventional meat and, ultimately, toward the mass adoption of cultivated products,” he added.

Reaching industrial scale faster

The new medium contains no serum, animal-derived components, steroids, hormones, growth factors, or antibiotics and all ingredients are food-safe.

It does not contain any proteins, growth factors or micro-carriers, which allow cell population growth.

The company said costs would also decline further when higher volumes of the medium were purchased.

The new medium means Meatly can reach industrial scale faster and contribute to make cultivated meat a safe and affordable reality, it said.

“Our protein-free culture medium represents a critical milestone for us and the wider cultivated meat industry,” said Helder Cruz, co-founder and chief scientific officer at Meatly. “By setting this new benchmark, we are driving the cost of production down significantly, which is something the industry has been grappling with for years.”

Last month, Meatly announced the production of the world’s first cultivated petfood, which it aims to sell in the UK this year, becoming the first company to sell cultivated meat in Europe.

“It is a huge step forward in scaling our technology and making our products available to pet owners on a commercial scale and at an affordable price,” Cruz added.