China Signed a $300 Million Lab-Grown Meat Deal with Israel

The country is eager to achieve its goal of reducing consumption of traditional meat by 50 percent.

9. 18. 17 by Brad Jones
anyaivanova/Getty Images

Fresh From the Lab

China has signed a trade agreement with Israel worth $300 million that will see the country import lab-grown meats produced by three companies: SuperMeat, Future Meat Technologies, and Meat the Future. This move is part of China’s ongoing effort to address its most pressing environmental problems.

Click to View Full Infographic

The Israel Innovation Authority and the Israel Export Institute were involved in brokering the deal with China. Both organizations were in attendance at the inaugural lab-made meat conference, which took place in Haifa, Israel this past May.

Israel is emerging as a major player in the nascent lab-grown meat industry, but plenty of research is also going on in the US. Memphis Meats recently received investments from Sir Richard Branson and Bill Gates, while Hampton Creek expects to sell its products commercially as early as next year. Even mainstream brands like Tyson foods are making plays to get in on the ground floor.

This particular kind of lab-grown meat is produced using animal cells, so it’s not completely slaughter-free — even if it does reduce the number of creatures killed for food overall. Scientists are researching a completely synthetic substitute. For the time being, lab-grown meat is poised to at least reduce the strain on the environment that’s caused by the farming of livestock.

Advertisement

Environmentally Friendly

It’s estimated that 14.5 percent of greenhouse gas emissions can be attributed to livestock, with cattle being the biggest culprit. If we didn’t need to farm so many cows to produce beef products, we could reduce these emissions considerably.

Last year, he Chinese government announced plans to encourage citizens to eat less meat, in an effort to reduce the country’s consumption by 50 percent. As it stands, around $13.5 billion worth of meat is imported into the country every year.

While $300 million may seem like a drop in the bucket compared to $10 billion, there are hopes that this partnership will be successful enough to prompt a larger investment. “This could put [lab-made] meat onto the radar of Chinese officials who have the capacity to steer billions of dollars into this technology,” commented head of the Good Food Initiative, Bruce Friedrich, according to a report by Quartz.

Lab-grown meat is also cheaper and healthier than traditional meat. It may take a while for the general public to get on board, but it seems like its advantages will soon be too much to ignore.

Advertisement


As a Futurism reader, we invite you join the Singularity Global Community, our parent company’s forum to discuss futuristic science & technology with like-minded people from all over the world. It’s free to join, sign up now!

Share This Article

Keep up.
Subscribe to our daily newsletter to keep in touch with the subjects shaping our future.
I understand and agree that registration on or use of this site constitutes agreement to its User Agreement and Privacy Policy

Advertisement

Copyright ©, Singularity Education Group All Rights Reserved. See our User Agreement, Privacy Policy and Cookie Statement. The material on this site may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, cached or otherwise used, except with prior written permission of Futurism. Fonts by Typekit and Monotype.