Will Lab-Grown Chicken Come Home To Roost?

By: James Flippin · June 23, 2023 · Reading Time: 2 minutes

Poultry Paradigm Shift

The US Department of Agriculture, or USDA, just made an industry-shaking decision regarding lab-grown meat. Specifically, the USDA will officially start inspecting lab-grown chicken for US consumption. This marks a major step for consumers looking to satisfy their cravings, guilt-free.

When it comes to American eating habits, chickens rule the roost. Each year, America consumes a mind-boggling 8 billion chickens — or roughly 24 chickens per person.

But the land, water, and other resources required to raise this poultry can have a negative impact on the environment, in addition to the ethical concerns surrounding animal welfare. Lab-grown meat poses a potential solution.

Closer Inspection

The cellular technology involved in creating lab-grown meat allows food developers to use animal cells to produce food without actually raising live animals. The process aims to create meat that tastes like the real thing without all the required resources on animal feed, land, and water.

The USDA has not yet approved lab-grown meat for consumption. However, it did recently grant approval for two California-based food companies, Upside Foods and GOOD Meat, to begin receiving federal inspections. If they pass inspection, these test tube food manufacturers will be allowed to start selling their lab-grown products on the market.

Recipe for Success

Notably, the FDA has already deemed food from both companies as safe for human consumption. So the USDA inspection is essentially the final hurdle for the product to pass before going to market.

If the USDA extends the green light for the lab-grown chicken, the first step for Upside Foods and GOOD Meat will be to start offering their laboratory poultry through restaurant partners. From there, it would only be a matter of time until you’re able to purchase lab-grown chicken from your local grocery store.

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