On Thursday, JBS’s subsidiary, Bio Tech Foods, announced they are going to build a commercial size cell cultured meat plant in Spain. The Brazilian meatpacker’s subsidiary said the investMEAT project, focused on research in cell lines, cultured media and biomaterials that allows scaling up cultivated meat production to the industrial level, has just obtained the support of the Spanish Institute for Foreign Trade (ICEX).
The JBS press release added, “In this line, the project led by BioTech Foods, ‘Research on cell lines, cultured media and biomaterials for their correct bioprocessing to enable the production of cultivated meat’ (investMEAT)’ will allow a highly efficient cultivated meat production line, which will solve the challenges of current technology linked to scalability.”
The factory, which JBS says will be the world’s largest lab-grown meat plant, should produce more than 1,000 metric tons of cultivated beef per year, JBS said. It said it could expand capacity to 4,000 metric tons per year in the medium term.
The news broke during the Wyoming Stockgrowers Association annual meeting in Riverton. NCBA President Todd Wilkinson was present at the meeting and told Northern Ag Network’s Andy Schwab this is one of the biggest issues facing the cattle industry.
“We’ll gladly compete against that, but the consumer needs to know at the counter what they’re buying,” said Wilkinson. He added his concerns that happened to the milk industry when imitation products filled the shelves. “I just don’t want the beef industry go by way of what happened to milk and lose the ability to identify our product as unique and natural,” Wilkinson added.
He also highlighted a recent study that the global warming potential of lab-based meat using these purified media is four to 25 times greater than the average for retail beef. “They can say that it’s designed to feed the world, but it’s feeding the world a non-natural product and it’s a product that is going to require more energy to produce, and don’t tell me it’s sustainable,” said Wilkinson.
The state of art plant is aiming for mid-2024 launch.
Northern Ag Network – 2023