Israeli company Aleph Farms, a company which gave the world its first cell-based burger back in 2018 and first cultivated thin-cut steak has now achieved another milestone with world’s first 3D printed steak. The company has partnered with the faculty of biomedical engineering at the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology for the technology. The company “successfully cultivated the world’s first slaughter-free ribeye steak, using three-dimensional (3D) bioprinting technology and natural building blocks of meat – real cow cells, without genetic engineering and immortalization. With this proprietary technology developed just two short years after it unveiled the world’s first cultivated thin-cut steak in 2018 which did not utilize 3D bioprinting, the Company now has the ability to produce any type of steak and plans to expand its portfolio of quality meat products,” states the company release.
Aleph Farms’ proprietary 3D bioprinting technology can print ‘actual living cells that are then incubated to grow, differentiate, and interact, in order to acquire the texture and qualities of a real steak. The process is similar to the vascularization that occurs naturally in tissues, enables the perfusion of nutrients across the thicker tissue and grants the steak with the similar shape and structure of its native form as found in livestock before and during cooking,” adds the release.
“We recognize some consumers will crave thicker and fattier cuts of meat,” states Didier Toubia, Co-Founder and CEO of Aleph Farms. So the company’s cultivated ribeye steak is a thicker cut than the company’s first offering, the thin-cut steak. The 3D bioprinted steak is complete with muscle and fat similar to its slaughtered counterpart and claims the same organoleptic attributes of a deliciously tender, juicy ribeye steak that is available from the butcher.
The man behind the technology is Technion Professor Shulamit Levenberg, Aleph’s Co-Founder and Chief Scientific Advisor. Levenberg is considered a global leader in tissue engineering and has conducted over two decades of research in the field at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and at the Technion, in Israel. Levenberg is also the former Dean of the Biomedical Engineering Faculty at the Technion.
One of the key investors in Aleph Farms is American food company Cargill Inc via its affiliate Cargill Ventures, which is a wholly-owned venture investment group of Cargill.