Because Animals Inc, a pet nutrition startup, is introducing a clean meat pet food made from meat grown without the animal. The company will debut its clean meat line of pet foods in early 2020 with a cat treat made from mice, the ancestral diet of the cat. The meat will be cultured, without slaughtering any animals, said company officials.
Clean or cell-based meat is meat grown using biotechnology, without raising or slaughtering animals. It has the same nutritional value and composition as animal-based meat, officials said.
"What makes this clean meat extra special is that we've grown it without any animal ingredients," said Dr. Shannon Falconer, CEO of Because Animals in Philedelphia. "At the moment, the standard in the clean meat industry is to grow tissue using serum from another animal–usually fetal bovine serum. Because Animals is changing that by creating ultra-nutritious foods that provide all the nutritional benefits of traditional animal protein but with animal-free ingredients that protect pets, people and our planet."
Because Animals has developed a proprietary media that provides the nutrients and growth factors needed for mouse tissue to grow, officials said.
According to the company, clean meat promises to be more environmentally sustainable than current commercial pet foods. In a recent study, Gregory S. Okin at University of California Los Angeles concluded that more than a quarter of the environmental effects of factory farming are directly attributable to pet food.
It is the mission of Because Animals and the company co-founders, Shannon Falconer and Joshua Errett, to replace the unsavory ingredients found in today’s pet food with nutritious and sustainable ingredients from cultured protein and clean meat, officials said.
Because Animals’ current product on the market is a Probiotic & Superfood Supplement made with 100 percent human-grade, sustainably sourced ingredients, including hand-harvested Atlantic seaweed, and organic goodies such as blueberries, pumpkin, coconut flour and wheatgrass. Because Animals, an e-commerce startup, was first launched in December 2016.