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MEAT & SEAFOOD

Aleph Farms kicks off maiden cell-grown steak with beef cut appearance
Thursday, 13 December, 2018, 08 : 00 AM [IST]
Ashdod
Aleph Farms Ltd has kicked off the first cell-grown minute steak, delivering the full experience of meat with the appearance, shape, and texture of beef cuts.

The food tech start-up’s new product demonstrates its capabilities for growing different types of natural beef cells isolated from the cow into a fully 3-D structure similar to conventional meat.

The breakthrough not only obtains the true texture and structure of beef muscle tissue steak, but also the flavor and shape, establishing a new benchmark in cell-cultured meat technology.

Aleph Farms successfully grown slaughter-free steak, without the need for devoting vast tracts of land, water, feed, and other resources to raise cattle for meat and uses no antibiotics.

Cell-grown meat is typically grown from a few cells of a living animal, extracted painlessly. These cells are nourished and grow to produce a complex matrix that replicates muscle tissue.

One of the barriers to grown meat production has been getting the various cell types to interact with each other to build a complete tissue structure as they would in the natural environment inside the animal.

The challenge is to find the right nutrients and their combination that would allow the multi-cellular matrix to grow together efficiently, creating a complete structure.

The company overcame this obstacle thanks to a bio-engineering platform developed in collaboration with the Technion – Israel Institute of Technology, Haifa.

“We’re shaping the future of the meat industry — literally,” said Didier Toubia, co-founder and chief executive officer, Aleph Farms.

“Making a patty or a sausage from cells cultured outside the animal is challenging enough, imagine how difficult it is to create a whole-muscle steak. At Aleph Farms, this is not science fiction, We have transformed the vision into reality by growing a steak under controlled conditions,” he added.

“The intial products are still relatively thin, but the technology we developed marks a true breakthrough and a great leap forward in producing a cell-grown steak,” Toubia stated.

Aleph Farms is implementing a combination of six unique technologies that allow it to drop the production costs of the meat, including innovative approached related to an animal-free growth medium to nourish the cells and bioreactors - the tanks in which the tissue growth.

“The company’s minute steak is thinly sliced and will cook in just a minute or so,” said Amir Ilan, chef, Paris Texas, Ramat Gan, Israel.

“For me, it is a great experience to eat meat that has the look and feel of beef, but has been grown without antibiotics and causes no harm to animals. Aleph Farms’ meat has high culinary potential - it can be readily incorporated into top-shelf preparations or served in premium casual restaurants, trendy cafes, bistros or other eateries,” he added.

Aleph Farms was co-founded in 2017 by Israeli food-tech incubator The Kitchen, a part of the Strauss Group Ltd, and Technion. The company is supported by American and European venture capital firms. It joined The Rising Food Stars - the EIT’s (European Institute of Technology) Food club of outstanding agro-food start-ups in July 2018.


 
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