- Dutch cultivated meat startup Meatable held a pork sausage tasting in Singapore, laying the groundwork for regulatory approval and launch in the Asian island nation next year.
- The tasting was held with potential retail partners and the Singapore Economic Development Board. After launching in Singapore, which the company plans will happen in 2024, Meatable intends to launch in the United States.
- For years, several cultivated meat startups have worked with governments in Singapore and elsewhere to gain approval to serve their products to consumers. So far, there is only one approval in the world: Eat Just’s Good Meat chicken in Singapore.
As technology and processes in cultivated meat become more sophisticated, many startups have their eyes on product launches, not just experimentation.
In order to conduct a tasting in the Asian nation, Meatable had to meet stringent safety requirements laid out by the Singapore Food Agency — which is the agency that grants full approval for cultivated meat. In a press release, co-founder and CEO Krijn de Nood said this represents a “significant milestone” for Meatable because it “is an important step towards regulatory approval for sales in Singapore.”
In 2022, Meatable took big steps toward a Singapore launch, announcing a partnership with contract manufacturer Esco Aster to produce its meat there last October.
While the company plans to sell cultivated meat sausages in Singapore, it is also planning to create products that are hybrids of plant-based and cultivated meat. Last November, the company announced a partnership with plant-based butcher Love Handle to establish a Future of Meat innovation center in Singapore focused on these hybrids. The partnership was brought together by the Singapore Economic Development Board, which is the government agency that oversees business strategies to enhance the nation’s position as a center for innovative technology.
If Meatable receives regulatory approval for its cultivated pork in Singapore this year, it could be the second company in the world to be able to sell meat that is grown from cells in bioreactors. But there are other companies that could pull ahead in that race. In Singapore, Australian cultivated meat company Vow is working toward a launch of cultivated Japanese umai quail under its Morsel brand.
The United States is also moving forward with approvals, with the FDA approving the safety of cultivated chicken from Upside Foods and Eat Just in the last six months. Both of those companies are working with USDA to get that department’s approval, which they need in order to sell their cultivated meat.
Caroline Wilschut, director of commerce and strategy at Meatable, said in an email that the company is working toward regulatory approval with the FDA already, and it plans to eventually have production facilities here, though none are currently in the works.
Meatable is also working toward cultivated meat approval in Europe — both the entire E.U. and with its home country of the Netherlands, from which it hopes to get permission to do tastings, similar to what it received from Singapore.