Protein Printer

Preview image of “Protein Printer”
  • Layer-by-layer printing makes the processing and texture of the artificial product quite close to genuine meat
  • Unsplash

Vegan steaks from the 3D printer – that’s the vision of start-up Redefine Meat.

The market for meat alternatives is growing rapidly. Beyond Meat has taken supermarkets by storm with a vegan burger, while other suppliers such as Mosa Meat and Just have already succeeded in producing “clean meat” from stem cells. Experts forecast an annual market potential for this sector of up to 140 billion dollars – in ten years!

Redefine Meat intends to place the first 3D printers on the market as early as 2020 via “large, well-known” sales partners. The device is around the size of a refrigerator, and its process can be observed through its large glass sides. The sophisticated printing technology is supposed to provide a texture and bite experience hardly distinguishable from conventional muscle meat. The ingredients consist of three vegetable proteins, fat and water, and are delivered in a cartridge.

The prototype can print one kilogram of meat substitute per hour, and the market-ready devices should be ten times faster. The Tel Avivbased company is aiming to keep the cost of one kilogram for market launch at around 30 euros. Taste will also determine the success of the idea: The reactions of the first test eaters after a blind tasting in a restaurant with a vegan kebab from the 3D printer were positive. Investors also believe in the concept. In the second half of 2019, six million dollars flowed into the company. Among the investors is one of the largest German food companies, the poultry breeder and processor PHW Group.