The Hallman study is significant because it followed a robust scientific process. Based on the analysis, we think the most appropriate terms are “cell-based” or “cell-cultured” meat or seafood, while the term “cultivated” without the word “cell” is misleading. A similar thorough analysis should be done for other types of meats.
‘Lab-grown’ seafood is a food marketer’s nightmare. ‘Clean’ seafood carries the tacit implication that the regular stuff is dirty. ‘Cultivated’ seafood – a term that performed well in recent research on meat & poultry – could be confused with farmed fish. However, ‘cell-based’ – while not perfect – may be the best common or usual name to describe seafood grown from animal cells on food labels, suggests new research.
The dispute began late last year after Miyoko’s was told by the Department of Food & Agriculture to drop the terms ‘butter,’ ‘lactose-free,’ hormone-free’ and ‘cruelty-free,’ from its plant-based butter product (which is made from coconut oil, sunflower oil and cashew nuts) because “it is not a dairy product.” Miyoko’s – which said it was given no choice but to develop custom packaging for California (“creating a logistical nightmare”), change marketing and packaging materials nationwide at huge expense, or risk prosecution – filed a lawsuit* in February 2020 in a bid to prevent the State from enforcing its demands, which Miyoko’s argued violated its First Amendment rights.
“Laboratory-grown meat will become more prevalent in the future, and this bill will proactively prevent these franken-meat alternatives from being labeled as meat,” Gallion said at Thursday’s bill hearing.“We just think it’s unnecessary. Not only are our members in full compliance with all federal regulations on the subject, but we’ve even gone beyond that with our own guidelines,” Dan Colgrove with the Plant-Based Foods Association told lawmakers Thursday.
As consumers, we sometimes seek out these imitation products as a cheaper or more readily available alternative to the original, but most often we would prefer the real deal. After all, the name itself implies that the original is better than the fake version.
Last year, Missouri became the first of the 50 US states to officially define meat as a food product coming from animals. Similar bills are being examined across the country.In France, lawmakers in the Chamber of Deputies adopted an amendment that was later rejected and taken up in the Senate targeting products with a “significant” plant-based component that use the words “steak,” “bacon” or “sausage.”In Germany, where the terms “Fleischersatz” (meat substitute) and “Fleischimitat” (meat imitation) are widespread, the agriculture ministry published in late 2018 recommendations that packaging clearly indicate “vegetarian” or “vegan” when applicable, as well as what substitutes are used.