content tagged as Sustainability

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Insects are an attractive alternative source of high quality animal protein for the food industry with a substantially lower environmental footprint than vertebrate livestock. Insects can be raised very naturally compared with other livestock, without hormones, antibiotics, and steroids; and very cleanly, free from hazards such as pathogens. Insects from farms in the US and Europe do not appear to contain foodborne pathogens such as Salmonella, Listeria, E. coli or Staphylococcus aureus. Although billions of pounds of insects have been produced for the pet food and animal feed industry, a huge global potential exists for viable food and ingredient production from insects. Research is proving that insect farming, processing and consumption a viable option both economically and nutritionally. The private sector is recognizing insects have potential in alleviating problems related to food security and are looking to them for food ingredients, fish meal, emergency food relief, and domestic animal feed.

This session will offer insights into the advances in all aspects of commoditizing insects as ingredients for the food industry, including farming and production, supply chain, processing developments and regulatory and economic aspects of this emerging industry.
The idea of producing meat using cell culture in a controlled and sterile environment, rather than from slaughtered animals has been discussed for decades. However, the technology to make this vision a reality has only recently come to fruition. Clean meat, or cell-cultured meat, has the ability to address all of the most pressing concerns about conventional animal agriculture, including land use, water consumption, food safety, antibiotic overuse, and animal welfare concerns. In this session, we will discuss the developments that have occurred along the entire pathway to commercialization – from translation between various related fields of academic research to launching start-ups to defining the regulatory landscape for this new category of food products.

Our speakers include a prominent academic researcher, the CEO of the leading U.S. clean meat company, and a food law policy expert – thus spanning the development of this emerging industry from basic research to regulatory approval. The session will be opened by Dr. Liz Specht, senior scientist with the Good Food Institute, to introduce the concept of clean meat, as this will be a novel topic for many members of the audience, and to put each speaker’s role in the development of this technology in context. She will also moderate the discussion following the speakers’ talks, in which audience members will be invited to engage in discussion with all members of the panel.

David Kaplan, PhD, is a Distinguished Professor and Director of the Bioengineering and Biotechnology Center at Tufts University, and is a renowned researcher in tissue, biomedical, and chemical engineering. He is currently advising a Ph.D. student conducting research directed towards cell cultured meat development, and will discuss the potential for translating advances in other academic areas towards accelerating the development of clean meat.

Uma Valeti, MD – a cardiologist by training – is the co-founder of Memphis Meats, which launched in 2015 and within months had produced its first cell cultured meatball. Uma will address the opportunities this field exhibits for entrepreneurial endeavors, the challenges he has faced in launching one of the very first clean meat companies, and an update of the rapid progress Memphis Meats has made in the last year.

Nicole Negowetti, JD, is a food policy expert and former law professor, and she currently serves as Policy Director for the Good Food Institute. She will provide insight on the regulatory roadmap that these new products will have to navigate – addressing questions of jurisdiction, labeling, and food safety – as well as discuss issues of transparency and consumer acceptability.