NEW YORK — Cultivated meat, also known as lab-grown meat, has been cleared for sale in the United States.
Upside Foods and Good Meat, two companies based in California that make what they call “cultivated chicken,” said Wednesday that they have gotten approval from the US Department of Agriculture to start producing their cell-based proteins.
Good Meat, which is owned by plant-based egg substitute maker Eat Just, said that production is starting immediately. Cultivated or lab-grown meat is grown in a giant vat, much like what you’d find at a beer brewery.
Good Meat, which has been selling its products in Singapore, advertises its product as “meat without slaughter,” a more humane approach to eating meat. Supporters hope that cultured meat will help fight climate change by reducing the need for traditional animal agriculture, which emits greenhouse gases.
The company had previously announced that it was partnering with chef and restaurateur José Andrés to bring the item to a Washington, DC restaurant. It is working with his team on a launch but doesn’t have specific information on timing at this point, according to a company spokesperson.
The regulatory hurdle cleared Wednesday is called a “grant of inspection,” which is issued by the USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service. Applications for such a grant “are approved following a rigorous process, which includes assessing a firm’s food safety system,” an FSIS spokesperson said Wednesday.
“This announcement that we’re now able to produce and sell cultivated meat in the United States is a major moment for our company, the industry and the food system,” Josh Tetrick, co-founder and CEO of Good Meat and Eat Just, said in a statement Wednesday.
Wednesday’s move follows a series of previous approvals which have paved the way for sales of cultivated meat in the US.
Last week, Good Meat said that it had received approval for labels for its product from the USDA. And in March, the company said it had received a so-called “no questions” letter from the Food and Drug Administration. That letter states that the administration is satisfied that the product is safe to sell in the United States. The FDA issued a similar letter Upside Foods in November.
— CNN’s Katie Hunt contributed to this report.
The-CNN-Wire™ & © 2023 Cable News Network, Inc., a Warner Bros. Discovery Company. All rights reserved.