Meat from cultivated animal cells can be sold in the U.S. for the 1st time

Category: Technology/Innovations


Unlocking Word Meanings

Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article.

  1. cultivated / ˈkʌl tɪ veɪ tɪd / (adj.) – relating to crops grown under controlled conditions

    Many vegan recipes use cultivated mushrooms instead of meat.

  2. drastically / ˈdræs tɪk li / (adv.) – in a way that is extreme or sudden

    Many processes in the company drastically changed under the new management.

  3. upscale / ˈʌpˈskeɪl / (adj.) – relating to rich people

    She always shops at exclusive and upscale stores in the city.

  4. graze / greɪz / (v.) – to cause animals to eat grass or other plants growing at a particular place

    Every morning, I let my cows graze on the field.

  5. substitute / ˈsʌb stɪˌtut / (n.) – something or someone that’s used instead of another thing or person

    A healthy smoothie can be a good meal substitute.


Read the text below.

Chicken grown from animal cells, not from slaughtered birds, can now be sold in the U.S., after the Agriculture Department issued approvals to California firms Upside Foods and Good Meat to sell the products, known as “lab-grown” or “cultivated” meat.

The goal is to eliminate harm to animals and drastically reduce the environmental impacts of raising them. The meat will initially be sold only at upscale restaurants.

Companies around the world are developing lab-grown chicken nuggets that do not involve slaughtering chickens. U.S. regulators for the first time approved the sale of chicken made from animal cells, allowing two California companies to offer “lab-grown” meat to the nation’s restaurant tables and eventually, supermarket shelves.

The Agriculture Department gave the green light to Upside Foods and Good Meat, firms that had been racing to be the first in the U.S. to sell meat that doesn’t come from slaughtered animals — what’s now being referred to as “cell-cultivated” or “cultured” meat as it emerges from the laboratory and arrives on dinner plates.

The move launches a new era of meat production aimed at eliminating harm to animals and drastically reducing the environmental impacts of grazing, growing feed for animals and animal waste.

A manufacturing company called JOINN Biologics, which works with Good Meat, was also cleared to make the products.

Cultivated meat is grown in steel tanks, using cells that come from a living animal, a fertilized egg or a special bank of stored cells.

Good Meat, which already sells cultivated meat in Singapore, the first country to allow it, turns masses of chicken cells into cutlets, nuggets, shredded meat and satays. The companies plan to serve the new food first in exclusive restaurants. Company officials are quick to note the products are meat, not substitutes like the Impossible Burger or offerings from Beyond Meat, which are made from plant proteins and other ingredients.

Globally, more than 150 companies are focusing on meat from cells, not only chicken but pork, lamb, fish and beef, which scientists say has the biggest impact on the environment.

This article was provided by The Associated Press.

Viewpoint Discussion

Enjoy a discussion with your tutor.

Discussion A

  • Do you think lab-grown meat can replace traditional livestock farming in the future? Why or why not? Discuss.
  • What do you think are the advantages and disadvantages of consuming lab-grown meat? Discuss.

Discussion B

  • How do you feel about food produced in laboratories? Does it excite you or concern you? Discuss.
  • Between meat substitutes and cultivated or lab-grown meats, which are you more likely to buy? Why? Discuss.