As you might already know, cultivated meat (also called cell-based or lab-grown meat) is produced sustainably from the extracted live cells without slaughtering the animal. Although it is not yet available on a commercial scale yet, cultured meat has similar culinary and sensory qualities to real meat. Also called lab-grown or cell-based meat, it will need to comply with certain standards and methods of production to enter the kosher and halal markets.
Defining kosher and halal food
Those who are Jewish and Muslim have specific guidelines and rules that determine if food is kosher or halal. Kosher meat is considered halal, but not vice versa.
Therefore, the animal is kosher if:
- it has cloven hooves
- it chews its cud
- it has scales and fins
Moreover, according to the kosher law, it is forbidden to:
- consume meat not slaughtered in a kosher manner
- eat a limb torn or cut from a living animal
- combine meat and dairy, and
- consume blood, the sciatic nerve, and some animal fats.
Defining cultivated meat as kosher or halal
Some rabbis claim that cultivated meat should meet some criteria to be considered kosher. Others argue that if cultivated meat is kosher, its consumption with dairy products will be prohibited.
The most vital consideration of cultivated meat is its origin. If the starter cells originated from a live animal or animal slaughtered against kosher rules, it falls into the prohibited category. However, if starter cells are isolated from a kosher-slaughtered animal, then the meat can be certified as kosher.
However, the final decision is still underway. It requires a thorough analysis of the exact production methods. The religious authorities are perusing this issue in consultation with Aleph Farms to arrive at the outcome.