Meat developed from spinach

Two male hands holding a bowl of spinach

So far, this is only possible in a laboratory, but scientists are optimistic

What would meat grown from spinach taste like? The plant of Arab origin, which reached Europe in the 15th century, is rich in iron, calcium and many other minerals, a powerful source of vitamin K, folic acid and other antioxidants. It is hailed as one of the tastiest green leafy vegetables and one of nature’s most powerful medicines.

Scientists recently discovered a new useful application for it: They grew meat cells on spinach leaves, and are optimistic that this achievement could accelerate the development of cultured meats, according to a preliminary report in Food BioScience.

Bunch of spinach tied with hemp
Photo: Unsplash

The unique spinach leaves

Stripped of everything but the network of veins that act as a circulatory system, the plant serves as an excellent nutrient substrate for growing animal protein from cattle. Boston College engineering professor Glen Gaudette, lead author of the study, chose spinach leaves because they are a natural circulatory system that is nearly impossible to replicate with available scientific methods and tools.

Prof. Gaudet’s team, made up of scientists from several universities, attracted worldwide attention back in 2017. Back then, after a series of experiments, he proved that a network of spinach leaves could cultivate human cardiac activity.

Spinach leaves photographed in close-up - the unique structure of the plant is emphasized.
Photo: Unsplash


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