The Mag

Cultured meat: Disruption in the dish

Factory farming has a devastating impact on the environment, and meat and milk production are responsible for about 15% of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions. Alternative solutions for meeting demand are desperately needed. At the end of 2020, San Francisco-based biotech Eat Just received approval in Singapore to begin selling cultured chicken nuggets in a partnering restaurant. It was the first such approval worldwide – but certain not to be the last. European start-ups are also looking to scale-up for sales here sooner than you might think.

In this issue:

G7 meeting – Global turning point?
Over €5.5bn have been committed to vaccinate, diagnose and treat the world's poorest for COVID-19. The Head of the Berlin Office of the Wellcome Trust, Caroline Schmutte, explains why global coordination is crucial for wealthy, industrialised nations as well in the fight against the disease.

Circular Bioeconomy – Bright biotech future
Surveys reveal that despite COVID-19, climate change and sustainability continue to matter to consumers – perhaps even more than ever before. The European Commission has proposed investing over €250bn earmarked for its post­-COVID-19 recovery programme into building a sustainable economy. Biotech companies stand to benefit significantly.

Special: Bioprocessing
COVID-19 vaccine hoarding and capacity expansion in the market for cell and gene therapy or vaccine vectors currently fill the books of CDMOs. Also, Pharma giants such as Novartis most recently opened own production site at Kundl, Austria, for plasmid DNA, the raw material for RNA production and viral vector construction.