“Clean Foie Gras” Demonstration

Shojinmeat Project has been working on visible-with-naked-eye scale culture of avian liver cells.

We have so far 
1. Cultured avian liver cells over 4 passivations
2. Observed liver cell self organization
3. Recovered liver cells in gram (visible) scale

“Passivation” is a process that rips cells from an overcrowded culture dish and move to new blank dish to give cells more space to grow. The process uses an enzyme called trypsin, and it has been said that this process is too damaging to liver cells.

The #R&D cluster members of Shojinmeat Project found a way to do passivation of liver cells at least for 4 times, and observed cell self-organization toward tissue formation.

From beginning to mid August, we have cultured 1.23g of avian liver cells and held a tasting session.

The taste was not like conventional foie gras, as we haven’t added iron, and it is chicken liver cells as opposed to duck/geese. Umami and sweet were strong, and texture was very similar to real foie gras — grainy paste.

More importantly, liver cells are known to secrete growth factors such as FGF and TGF-beta that spurs myoblasts (muscle stem cells). Improved liver cell culture methods can give more variety in clean meat and also helps lowering its cost.

We have presented this result in the “3rd International Conference of Cultured Meat” held in Maastricht for Sept.3–5.