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Scientists Invent Lab-Grown ‘Beef Rice’, Hailed as Revolutionary ‘Future Food’

Scientists grafted cow muscle and fat stem cells into rice grains to produce a novel food product that they said would provide protein with a smaller carbon footprint than beef.

Yonsei University researchers in South Korea released a study in the science journal Matter suggesting that “cell-cultured protein rice” could become a potential superfood.

To create the experimental diet, scientists coated ordinary rice grains in fish gelatin and seeded them with skeletal muscle and fat stem cells, which were subsequently developed in a laboratory.

The experts then cultured the muscle, fat, and gelatin-smothered rice for nine to eleven days.

At the end of the cultivation phase, the researchers analyzed the rice to determine its structure and nutritional value. They discovered that the beef-rice hybrid was both firmer and brittler than ordinary rice.

According to the experts, “meaty rice” (pink) has 8% more protein and 7% more fat than conventional rice.

Although the product has not yet been certified for consumer use, it is among a growing list of lab-grown meat and alternative proteins being researched in an effort to lessen the environmental impact of meat and dairy.

The researchers anticipate that their creation will emit less than 6.27 kg (13.82 lb) of CO2 per 100 g of protein, compared to beef’s 50 kg (110 lb).

“Imagine obtaining all the nutrients we need from cell-cultured protein rice,” Sohyeon Park, the lead author of the study, stated in a news release on Wednesday.

“Rice already has a high nutrient level, but adding cells from livestock can further boost it.”

In addition to making food more sustainable and economical, the researchers stated the beef rice might serve as “relief for famine, military ration, or even space food in the future”.

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