SCiFi Foods is a burger omnivore
The Future. All-plant burgers from the likes of Impossible Foods and Beyond Meat may have already reached market scale, so the next iteration of sustainable, environmentally-friendly meat-eating may belong to companies like SCiFi that are cooking burgers blended with both lab-made beef cells and plant products — as long as they don’t stray too far from the classic taste and texture of the real thing.
SCiFi Foods believes the sustainable burger of the future has two pretty traditional ingredients: meat and veggies.
- SCiFi Foods has developed a “blended” burger that mixes lab-created cultured beef cells (they’re testing between 5% and 20% volume per patty) with plant-based products like soy protein, coconut oil, oats, and mushrooms.
- The company claims that its burger solves the problems of people feeling like 100% plant-based burgers don’t feel like the regular burgers and making the production of lab-created burgers more affordable.
- It’s currently waiting for FDA approval, which may be on the way after Upside Foods received approval for its cultured chicken.
It does that while being great for the environment. A study about the environmental impact of SCiFi burgers out of Ohio State University found that it emitted 87% fewer greenhouse gasses, used 90% less land, and drained 96% less water than the entire supply chain of making traditional beef patties. (But it only used 39% less energy — those machines take power).
If you’re interested in just how the heck scientists can grow beef in a lab (and SCiFi’s novel way of doing so that keeps production costs down by 1000x), you can check out the company’s head-spinning explainer here. Truly sci-fi stuff.