The Future of Cultured Meat Production with Yaakov Nahmias

Today’s episode is part two of the discussion with Professor Yaakov Nahmias, the Israeli biomedical engineer and innovator. We discuss his startup, Future Meat Technologies, a company funded by Tyson Foods, which is poised to develop the next generation of cultured meat.

Initially when someone proposed the idea of cultured meat to him, Yaakov thought it would be too expensive. Drawing inspiration from the human body’s filtration and purification system, Future Meat Technologies is working on a bioreactor which removes the growth inhibiting ammonia from the cell growth process. With this breakthrough development, the company has a plan to drastically drive down the cost of cultured meat production and improve efficiency to the point where it could surpass the output of the conventional meat industry. This may not only feed more people, but also allow consumers to make more conscious decisions. Yaakov recognizes that it is a niche market and in order to widen the customer base it is important to make the product as close to conventional meat as possible.

Key Points From This Episode:
-An explanation of what cultured meat is
-Meat is made up of muscle and fat, so to mimic the taste in cultured meat, only fat is needed
-What fibroblasts are and why Yaakov’s company favors using them over other cells
-Why this new way of producing meat can be cheaper than using a conventional bioreactor
-How Future Meat Technologies’ purifying device works
-Why this way of producing meat is not genetically modified
-Why this technology’s shorter time frame allows for a higher level of market responsiveness
-What the most popular items in the meat market currently are
-What Yaakov envisions the future cultured meat industry to look like

“If you want to make a burger that tastes and smells like meat, you actually don’t need all the meat, you need the fat.” — Yaakov Nahmias

“Efficiency here is the name of the game. You don’t have a lot of margins. If this was a high margin industry then there would be more room for a couple of players.” — Yaakov Nahmias

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