In the current food system, animal farming contributes to 17% of total greenhouse gas emissions, yet it only provides 18% of global calories and 37% of global proteins. Cellular agriculture, specifically lab-grown meat and seafood, holds promise in mitigating the detrimental impacts of current intensive agricultural practices on human and animal health, as well as addressing nutritional challenges faced by the EU.

Health effects of agriculture on humans and animals 

  • Air pollution – Livestock farming can release significant amounts of ammonia, methane, and other pollutants into the atmosphere. These emissions contribute to air pollution as well as to climate change.

  • Water pollution – Agricultural runoff containing fertilizers contaminate water sources. Contaminated water can pose health risks to both humans and animals through direct consumption or indirect exposure.

  • Loss of biodiversity – Intensive monoculture farming practices can lead to the loss of biodiversity, including the depletion of native plant species. This loss of biodiversity can disrupt ecosystem functioning and reduce resilience to pests and diseases.

These are the reasons why the FEASTS (Fostering European Cellular Agriculture for Sustainable Transition Solution) project was launched. Some keys challenges that FEASTS addresses are environmental sustainability, resource efficiency, animal welfare, food security, health & nutrition, innovation, and economic growth. FEASTS seeks to promote the development and adoption of cellular agriculture as a viable and sustainable solution to the challenges facing traditional livestock farming. At the same time, the project also addresses broader societal goals related to environmental sustainability, food security, and public health. One of the objectives of FEASTS is to develop a stewardship model for the EU's cultured meat and seafood sector, aiming to enhance its future competitiveness. The aspiration is to devise a sustainable production framework that ensures the creation of safe, nutritious, and widely accessible cultured products for all consumers.


What is cellular agriculture?

Cellular agriculture is the production of food of animal origin from cell cultures rather than directly from animals. It currently uses two different approaches: cell culture (cellular) and precision fermentation (acellular). In the cell culture method, the meat is grown directly from cells.

What is cultured meat?

Cultivated meat, also known as cultured meat, is genuine animal meat (including seafood) that is produced by cultivating animal cells directly.



FEASTS will make a change

Over the next three years, FEASTS, and the joint forces of 36 independent institutions from 17 countries will explore the technologies utilized in the sustainable production of meat and seafood from cell cultures. They will delve into various aspects including nutrition, health, and regulatory considerations, while also examining food safety issues associated with these alternative protein sources. Ethical concerns surrounding lab-grown meat and seafood will be thoroughly examined. Furthermore, environmental, economic, and social life cycle analyses will contribute to dynamic systems models, broadening the comprehension of the multi-faceted impact of cellular agriculture on the environment and the food value chain.

FEASTS is funded by the European Union. EurA supports the project by quantifying the ecological impacts of the technologies/products that will be developed within FEASTS. The environmental impacts will be quantified using life cycle assessment (LCA) following DIN EN ISO 14040:2006 and DIN EN ISO 14044:2006 standards. We joined forces with Wageningen University to support techno-economic and life cycle cost analysis, and Ecoinnovazione in social life cycle assessment.

A pivotal aspect of FEASTS involves examining the potential of cultured meat and seafood technologies in shaping the future of agriculture. Recognizing that cellular agriculture products still rely on traditional farming inputs; FEASTS will engage farmers directly in the development of processes and future scenarios that ensure equitable economic benefits for them. Additionally, the project will investigate the implications for consumers. Addressing gaps in knowledge concerning nutrition and food safety will be approached with thoroughness and transparency, complemented by workshops, and focus group studies that centre on consumer preferences and the rich tapestry of food cultures in Europe.

Would you like to know more about the FEASTS project or are you interested in sustainability consulting? Feel free to get in touch with our experts.

🖊️ Text: Shashank Goayl

Shashank Goyal

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Shashank Goyal

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I am working as an LCA consultant at EurA AG. As an environmental professional, I have an experience of more than 4 years in Life Cycle Assessment. Before joining EurA AG, I worked as a research associate at the German Institute of Food Technologies (DIL e.V.). I acquired my Master of Science from the Brandenburg University of Technology, Germany in Environmental and Resource Management, spent a semester at the University of Texas, Arlington, USA, and a Bachelor of Technology in Environmental Engineering from India.

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