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Science & Technology

Cellular Agriculture

By 1st May 2023No Comments

Introduction to Cellular Agriculture

Cellular agriculture is a scientific discipline that focuses on the production of agricultural products from cell cultures using a combination of biotechnology, tissue engineering, molecular biology, and synthetic biology to create and design new methods of producing proteins, fats, and tissues that would otherwise come from traditional agriculture.

Cellular agriculture products were first commercialized in the early 20th century with insulin and rennet. Today, microorganisms cultivated in bioreactors already produce egg and milk proteins, sweeteners, and flavors for human nutrition as well as leather and fibers for shoes, bags, and textiles.

The goal of cellular agriculture is to produce meat, eggs, and dairy products directly from cell cultures in bioreactors through tissue engineering. Manufacturing cultured meat involves taking cells from an animal and growing them into muscles which then become food.


Benefits of Cellular Agriculture

Cellular agriculture offers great potential for solving some of the most pressing environmental problems of our time. Animal agriculture contributes to climate change, methane emissions, extensive land use, rainforest destruction, loss of biodiversity, and soil pollution. Cellular agriculture can help to free up resources that are currently used for animal agriculture, including 75% of global maize production, a third of grains, and two-thirds of soya, as well as 20% of freshwater. In addition to saving resources, cellular agriculture would only produce targeted products, avoiding any wasteful surplus. Compared to their conventional counterparts, cellular agriculture products have fewer environmental impacts, a safer, purer product, and a more consistent supply. This is because the product is being produced in safe, sterile, controlled conditions.