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India can lead in the upcoming $25b cultivated meat sunrise industry: Study

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Wild Type, Avant Meats, New Age Meats, Shiok Meats

Mumbai: CIIE.CO, in partnership with GFI India, has just released a first-of-its-kind landscape study of the cultivated meat ecosystem in India. Cultivated meat, produced by ‘farming animal cells’ rather than the tremendously inefficient process of raising and slaughtering animals, is vastly better for human and planetary health. Over the last few years, the industry has been developing at breathtaking speed around the world alongside other ‘smart protein’ categories such as plant-based meats, with investment in cultivated meat startups surpassing USD 1 billion in 2021.

With tremendous global momentum in the cultivated meat landscape, more startups are coming closer to pilot-scale proofs of concept, facilities are coming online, and governments are looking to create a path to market for cultivated meat products. But where does India stand within this global space race to transform the future of food? The new study by CIIE.CO and GFI India answers this, and more, by drawing up a roadmap for the advancement of bio-manufacturing and the cultivated meat industry – a critical step towards a sustainable, secure, and just food system.

The report combines insights from secondary data as well as in-depth interviews with multiple industry stakeholders including academicians and researchers, startups and entrepreneurs, policymakers, support institutions, and investors, with a focus on ecosystem building. It also lays out a granular stakeholder analysis, the current state of the industry, the opportunities they envision for the future, and the support they require to make this a reality. The success of the industry will rely heavily on scientific advancements borne by industry and academia alike. Bringing down costs and developing robust, scalable bioprocesses remain high priorities to advance towards a more secure, sustainable future – and India, with its robust biopharmaceutical industry, agricultural biodiversity, and world-class talent pool, offers immense value to the international smart protein sector in this regard!

The report can be found here: https://gfi-india.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/01/Building-an-ecosystem-for-cultivated-meat-in-India.pdf

GFI India has been at the centre of the ecosystem in the country, with domestic startups Clear Meat and MyoWorks and biotech service providers Laurus Bio inspired to form and enter the sector and a growing research community at institutes such as the Centre for Cellular & Molecular Biology forming through their work. 

Cultivated meat is an innovative method of producing meat from cell cultures. It’s meat produced by cultivating a small sample of animal cells directly, by ‘farming the cells directly’ instead of raising and slaughtering animals. By doing this, we move away from a highly wasteful process involving antibiotics, fecal contamination, and other threats that animal-derived meat pose. Cultivated meat is identical to animal meat at the cellular level, and thus, can provide the same sensory and nutritional profile of conventionally produced meat, while providing a more safe, repeatable, and sustainable production system.

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