Meatable Slashes Production Time for Cultivated Pork: Cell to Sausage in Four Days

Cultivated pork producer Meatable announces a new production milestone: from cell to sausage in “only four days”. This new record surpasses the company’s previous eight-day process, making it the quickest cell-cultivating method in the world, the company claims.

“This process is 60 times faster than traditional pig farming and involves nothing more than pulling a single cell once from a pig without causing harm,” says the Dutch startup.

A record-speed platform

To turn cells into a product more quickly than other methods of cultivating meat, Meatable has developed a cost-effective platform using pluripotent stem cells (known for their self-renewal capacity and fast proliferation) and a technology called opti-ox™ developed by co-founder Dr. Mark Kotter.  

This platform replicates the natural growth of cells, allowing them to differentiate into muscle and fat quickly and with precise control, delivering, according to Meatable, the same nutritional profile as meat. It is worth noting that Meatable’s first products are hybrid sausages and pork mince, not whole cuts like steaks. 

Regarding the amount of meat the company can produce using its record-speed platform, Meatable didn’t reveal its current scaling. However, the company has previously announced plans to grow pork cells in 200 L (500 L in the future) bioreactors at its new pilot facility in the Bio Science Park in Leiden.

Meanwhile, the company explains that its production milestone reduces cell differentiation time by 50% and requires only half the number of bioreactors at scale, reducing CAPEX costs and allowing for more efficient utilization of production space. 

“This is truly a remarkable moment for Meatable and the cultivated meat industry as a whole, as we just made the fastest process in the industry that much faster,” said Daan Luining, co-founder and CTO of Meatable. 

Meatable banner with the founders holding pork dumplings
© Meatable

High-quality cultivated pork

Founded in 2018, Meatable has raised $95 million, including a $35 million Series B round last year to launch its new pilot facility in the Netherlands. 

To commercialize products sooner than in other markets, the startup plans a restaurant launch in Singapore later this year (where it held its first-ever product tasting) and will continue to work on a US expansion by 2025.

Meanwhile, in Europe, the company expects to hold the Netherlands’ first cultivated meat tasting after it receives approval from the expert committee from Cellular Agriculture NetherlandsThe Dutch government has supported the cell ag industry with a €60 million initiative and forward-thinking decisions, such as approving cultivated meat and seafood tastings to help companies showcase their products and get consumer feedback.

However, the approval of cultivated meat in the country has to undergo the EU’s regulatory safety evaluation process for novel food, which is known to be lengthy and stringent — but one of the most robust in the world, according to the Good Food Institute Europe.

Cultivated pork sausages
Image courtesy of Meatable

Sustainable meat

This February, Iceland surprised us by hosting Europe’s first cultivated meat tasting. The event featured gourmet dishes crafted with cultivated quail developed by the Australian company Vow. “Cultivated meat is one of the solutions to the climate challenge,” said Iceland’s Prime Minister Katrín Jakobsdóttir, who tasted cultivated meat for the first time.

Overall, Meatable claims it can produce high-quality cultivated meat at a lower cost, allowing it to bring its sustainable and slaughter-free meat to market at a competitive price. 

Luining adds, “Meatable remains intensely focused on providing the world with a real meat solution without harming animals or the environment, and I’m proud to say that the reduction in cell differentiation time puts us on the path to delivering our products cost efficient[ly] at scale.”

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