Hyderabad: State’s capital is fast becoming ground zero for scientific research and development of commercially viable models of producing clean meat in India. Thanks largely to three organisations, including Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology (CCMB), Good Food Institute (GFI) and Humane Society International (HSI) India, who have created a platform for Indian researchers to work in the field of clean meat technologies.
Relatively a new concept, clean meat technology has the potential to change food consuming habits of individuals. Clean meat is also called as cultivated meat or cell-based meat and involves producing meat in a laboratory with cell culture technologies and without actually slaughtering animals.
At present, researchers can develop meat in a laboratory but worldwide, many are yet to figure out an efficient way to scale up production of clean meat in a cost effective way.
Last year, Atal Incubation Centre (AIC) of CCMB and HSI had entered into an MoU to collaborate for developing and promoting clean meat technologies in India. In collaboration with Good Food Institute, the CCMB-AIC and HSI have also organised a ‘Future of Protein’ summit.
As part of developing clean meat, the CCMB along with HSI had also managed to get funding for the initiative from Department of Biotechnology. In early 2019, the Good Food Institute and the Institute of Chemical Technology signed an agreement to set up a Centre of Excellence for Cellular Agriculture in Maharashtra.
For development and production of meat grown by culturing animal cells, the CCMB, HSI and Good Food Institute have launched an innovation challenge. The organisations have called for proposals from entrepreneurs and the scientific community to publish review papers on technologies that will help accelerate the development of clean meat in India.
Open to scientists from both private and public institutions, the grant will be provided to four selected proposals. The challenge aims to bring out research that critically evaluates the scope for the development and scale-up of clean meat in India.
“Clean meat technologies are at the interface of cell biology and chemical engineering, looking for innovations to meet the global challenges of food scarcity and environmental health of our future. We hope to bring awareness and smart solutions through this programme,” says Dr Madhusudana Rao, CEO of Atal Incubation Centre, CCMB.
To apply for innovation challenge, visit: http://aic.ccmb.res.in/
Why clean meat?
According to CCMB, HSI and Good Food Institute, clean meat has the potential to provide the world’s growing population with sustainable protein. Instead of raising and slaughtering animals for meat, clean meat is genuine animal meat, cultivated from cells outside of an animal. It can replicate the sensory and nutritional profile of conventionally produced meat and is comprised of the same cell types and arranged in the same 3D structure as animal tissue.
“This call for proposals is an exciting opportunity to tap into the vast technical talent and expertise India possesses. We are confident this project will bring out novel research that can serve as a base for further scientific innovation in the Indian clean meat sector,” says Alokparna Sengupta, managing director of HSI, India.