Italy bans ‘frankenstein’ meat, Beyond Meat woes worsen

Beef Central, 20/11/2023

Italy has banned meat grown in labs using animal tissue cells, and has also placed a ban on the use of labels that describe plant-based protein as meat.

Any company found to be violating the rule can now face fines ranging from 10,000 to 60,000 euros (AUD$16,00-$100,000).

Lab-grown meat burger

The AFP newsagency reported that Italy’s lower house approved the ban on Thursday, becoming the first European Union nation to ban the production and sale of lab-grown meat.

The law says it seeks to “protect the national livestock heritage” while recognising its cultural, socio-economic and environmental value.

It also seeks to ensure “a high level of protection of human health”, while protecting the interests of consumers and their right to information about what they are eating.

Italy’s main agricultural lobby Coldiretti refers to lab-grown meat as ‘Frankenstein’ meat and said the law represents “a commitment to defend the Mediterranean diet”.

Italy’s Agriculture Minister, Francesco Lollobrigida, said that cultivated meat “interrupts the virtuous relationship between land, man and work that for millennia has accompanied us and allowed us to maintain the land”.

However, an Italian non-profit, The International Organisation for the Protection of Animals criticise the law, according to AFP, calling it pointless.

“This ban is completely useless today since cultured meat has not yet been approved for human consumption in Europe and therefore cannot be marketed.”

The European Union, as per AFP, considers lab-grown meat a ‘novel food’ which means that any new product will be subject to authorisation from the bloc. If the bloc approves cultivated meat, Italy cannot ban it.

As of now, the meat is not allowed to be sold in the EU. However, companies in the US have been raising money for research into the new science.

Beyond Meat woes worsen

Meanwhile, the bad news keeps coming for plant based “meat” pioneer Beyond Meat which cut its annual revenue forecast for the second time this year, and announced new job cuts and a review of global operations as part of a cost-reduction plan.

Reuters reports that consumers have curtailed spending on its pricier plant-based products.

Beyond Meat expects 2023 net revenue to be in the range of $330 million to $340 million, compared with its prior outlook of $360 million to $380 million.

Reuters reports the segment is also facing uncertainty around the health benefits of plant-based meat.

CEO Ethan Brown told analysts last week that Beyond Meat is considering exiting certain product lines in the US.

Beyond Meat’s market capitalisation since floating in May 2019 has plummeted from over $9 billion to $440 million now, and its share prices has followed a similar trajectory, from over $240 per share to $6.65 today.


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  1. Sharon Amram, 23/11/2023

    Beyond meat is not vegan and the owner is belong to t black rock which trying to control this planet! Impossible meat is the first company and they are the American favorite so I’m happy Italy refuses but I’m not happy for the cows , they need just to cut meat!!!!so choose impossible that’s the best choice

  2. Rhonda Manley, 22/11/2023

    Beyond Meat is very good.
    I do not eat beef. Haven’t in over 20 years. My heart and soul is more at peace.
    The down side is , Beyond Meat is expensive , I don’t buy it unless it is on sale.
    People who eat beef will continue to eat beef ,while people who choose not to eat beef won’t , so what is the problem? This plant based product gives people a healthy alternative. The meat industry isn’t losing anything, except maybe people may be open to try this product before making judgement. What you afraid of? You might like it.

  3. Tracey, 22/11/2023

    We are losing the plot with our food choices. I’m proud of Italy for making those choices.

    Processed foods are being shown up for the bad food choice they are and lab grown meat is insane.

    Real food, real life 💃

  4. Donna Ann West, 22/11/2023

    I enjoy Beyond burgers no soy no gluten taste good I feel good when I eat it! What is all the fuss????

  5. Aglondier, 22/11/2023

    Vat grown animal protein is the way forward. No pesticides, no pollution, no heavy metals, no environmental radiation. With the world population skyrocketing, we need food sources that can feed us all. Even the most advanced farming techniques struggle to keep up with demand. Likewise, our demand for fish protein is swiftly outpacing the ability of the oceans to supply us. We need to support this.

    Readers might be interested in this earlier Beef Central item, presenting a somewhat different view: The darker side of lab-grown meat – editor

  6. Kayteni, 22/11/2023

    It’s processed food

  7. Chuck Deezul, 22/11/2023

    I love ‘Beyond’ products. I’m hoping the company thrives and exceeds what negative press they are receiving

  8. Peggy Herzog, 22/11/2023

    This is an unbelievable step backward for mankind. I am of Italian decent and enjoy making tradition foods using products that don’t cause pain and suffering to animals. I appreciate these companies who have made this possible. It is such a shame in today’s world that people are still so ignorant and selfish!

    • Valola, 22/11/2023

      Only time will tell what detrimental effects artificial foods will have on people. Look at the damage micro plastic does to the brain. Plastic is sometimes plant based too. We need to be very careful.

  9. Peter Brils, 21/11/2023

    We all love Good Prosciutto and Mortadella, Bellisimo

  10. Lynne Post, 21/11/2023

    I am so glad to see sanity starting to prevail. Naturally grown food is the only way, who really knows what could be added to lab grown food, the thought makes me nervous.

  11. Nic Walsh, 21/11/2023

    What a moronic decision

  12. Missy, 21/11/2023

    Wish the USA would do this and take all these chemicals out of our food.

  13. Liliana, 21/11/2023

    I am glad Italy is banning fake meat. Disgusting I would never it it!!!!
    Hope this law never come into effect !!!
    Poor farmers they will all be out of work.
    Not good at all!!!!

    • Chris, 21/11/2023

      Yup farmers can only raise and kill animals nothing else can be down with farm land. Do we say poor coal miners and ban solar panels? No we move forward when a better option presents itself.

    • Leanne Williams, 21/11/2023

      Could not agree more. The farmers are growing real, nutrient dense food and being supported by no-one.

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