Wow: Tech Company Bioprints First Cultivated Grouper Fish

Dylan Turck
In a groundbreaking achievement, a tech company successfully bio-printed the first cultivated grouper fish. Marking a significant milestone in bioprinting, which has the potential to revolutionize the world’s approach to sustainable seafood production.
Local Singaporean fish dish by Chef Moran Lidor. Photo: Shlomi Arbiv | Steakholder Foods

This groundbreaking feat is due to the collaboration between Steakholder Foods and Umami Meats, backed by a Singapore-Isreal industrial research and development foundation.

Stakeholder Foods utilized a proprietary inkjet bioprinter to create the grouper fillet, made entirely from animal cells, without harming animals. The process involved harvesting cells from a grouper fish and cultivating them in a lab before using a 3D bioprinter to create the final product.

The implications of this achievement are enormous and could potentially save our oceans from the destruction that the commercial fishing industry poses. With overfishing and other unsustainable practices threatening the world’s oceans, there is a growing need for alternative methods of farming seafood.

Bioprinting offers a promising solution that could alleviate some of the pressure on natural fisheries while providing a more ethical and sustainable source of seafood for consumers.

Creating Food Using Bioprinting

Local Israeli fish dish by Chef Moran Lidor. Photo: Shlomi Arbiv | Steakholder Foods

Bioprinting has revolutionized the field of 3D printing by offering a unique approach to creating functional biological tissues. One of the most exciting applications of bioprinting is in the development of lab-grown meat, which has the potential to revolutionize the way we produce food in the future.

The process of bioprinting involves the use of bio-ink, which is formulated from carefully selected cell lines and additional genetic materials. After which, The bio-ink is loaded into a specialized 3D printer, which uses a digital design to print a whole cut of meat with pinpoint precision in just a matter of minutes.

Once stem cells have been chosen, they undergo an incubation period of multiple weeks, which allows the stem cells to mature into either fatty tissue or muscle fiber. During this time, muscular fibers form, attaining the appropriate density, thickness, and length required to yield a precise portion of meat.

After the meat has fully incubated, it will be inspected by scientists and advanced machinery for any defects or problems. Once it has passed inspection, it will be packaged and sent to supermarkets for consumers to purchase. Lab-grown meat is becoming more common and soon, hopefully, it will take over and revolutionize the commercial farming industry.

Potential Impacts Of Bioprinting On The Food Industry

Bioprinted seafood has numerous benefits over conventional fishing methods, such as being more environmentally friendly, having greater control over the quality of fish, controlling and maintaining the amount of fish produced, and ensuring that there are fewer bacteria and viruses present in the fish.

Commercial fishing can be cruel and inhumane, involving the capture and subsequent killing of countless marine animals. Commercial fishing boats also use large nets that damage oceanic ecosystems. Bioprinting eliminates this cruelty by creating seafood products without the need to harm living animals.

Of course, there are still challenges that need to be overcome before bio-printed seafood becomes a widespread reality. One of the biggest challenges is the cost.

Bioprinting is still an expensive process, and the price of bio-printed seafood will likely be higher than traditional seafood products for some time. However, as the technology continues to improve and become more efficient, the cost of production is expected to decrease.

Bioprinting provides a promising solution to the environmental and ethical challenges of commercial fishing methods and has the potential to transform the way we produce and consume seafood.


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