A Montreal-based company says it created a solution to making plant-based meats more appealing - mix them with lab-grown animal fat.
Plant-based meat could soon contain animal fat — but not the kind you’re probably thinking about.
In recent years, meat alternative companies have debuted their products to acclaim and interest. And while the plant-based food market is growing, not all products are seeing the same kind of uptake with some companies’ stocks now trading at a fraction of what they once were.
Lab-grown meat and plant-based meat can have a lower ecological footprint and involve no animal suffering. However, it can be hard to replace the taste of meat.
A Montreal company says it has a solution to make the faux burgers and nuggets more palatable: add animal fat.
“It turns out most of the joy and flavour that we get from traditional meat products is coming from the fat,” Pooya Mamaghani said.
Mamaghani, co-founder of meat alternative company Genuine Taste, said they harvested cells from an anesthetized cow (who woke up afterwards) and now grow animal fat cells in a lab. Cultivated fat, he stressed, is “real animal fat without slaughtering animals.”
“We took a few stem cells from an animal and grow (them) in a bioreactor and end up with the same composition of real animal fat to enhance taste, texture, and flavour of alternative meat products,” he said, speaking from Montreal.
He stressed there is no animal cruelty and told Global News they can engineer the cells to be healthier, creating good fats where there once were trans fats.