Artificial meat is already becoming mainstream, and in a small laboratory in Silicon Valley, scientists are busy growing the “perfect fish” from stem cells. Artificial muscular and fatty tissues can be used to make cutlets, fillets and other dishes using 3D food printing.
The products of the BlueNalu startup are noticeably different from the vegetable meat that companies like Beyond Meat or Impossible Foods now produce and which impersonates what it really is not. BlueNalu creates “alternative seafood” from the cells of real fish – just grows them in an unusual way.
“The only difference between BlueNalu fillet and ordinary fish is that there are no bones in ours,” said head of BlueNalu. “And we also have no mercury, parasites, microplastic, and bacteria that usually cover fish.”
In addition, in an artificially grown fillet there are no nerves, lymphatic system and blood vessels, writes Phys.org. Therefore, the leaders of a startup call it “pure meat”. Some researchers prefer the name “cultivated” or “grown from cells”, and in the media you can find more frightening: “laboratory” or “test-tube meat”.
This is a natural reaction to something unknown. However, BlueNalu will have to overcome public opinion if a startup is seriously going to create a network of factories around the world and produce enough seafood to feed 10 million people in neighboring cities. At least, this goal was set by the founders of the company.
As for the technology, the process is as follows: live fish are taken samples of muscle stem cells, which are placed in a bioreactor with nutrients. The cells believe that they develop in the body of the fish and continue to multiply. Then they are mixed with nutritious “bio-ink” and run through a 3D printer, giving them the desired shape.
What is this artificial fish to the taste – while it is impossible to say, a startup is just beginning its development. But the head promises that BlueNalu will be able to produce fillets that will meet the expectations of consumers in taste and texture.
BlueNalu now has only one serious competitor – Californian startup Finless Foods, which has attracted $ 3.5 million from investors. He promises to produce test tube fish cakes at natural prices by 2020.