Cell-based crustacean meat pioneer, Shiok Meats recently presented the ‘world’s first’ cultured crab meat at Bulkit Timah restaurant in Singapore.
The private event saw Shiok collaborate with Chef Jose Luis Del Amo of TheTasteLab to produce two fan favourites- Crab Cake and Chilli Crab. The dishes were complimented with lobster-flavoured potato chips and Tom Yum shrimp soup, all curated from Shiok Meat’s own line of cell-based meats.
The milestone event is focused at bringing Shiok Meats closer to making cell-based crustacean meat available to the audience by the year 2023. Shiok Meats says that it places a strong emphasis on its research and development process, and is also planning to build the first-ever manufacturing plant in Singapore for commercial-scale production of cell-based seafood.
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Singapore-based Shiok Meats started its journey in 2019, and presented their shrimp prototype in Siew Mai dish (Chinese steamed dumplings) seven months later. In November 2020, they came up with the first lobster prototype. Ever since, they have been exploring different cell prototypes.
While the crab cake contained Shiok Meat’s crab and Omnimeat, as a blend of cell-based and plant-based, the chilli crab dish was formulated using Shiok Meat’s crab and presented with Mantou Buns.
The Tom Yum Soup incorporated Shiok Meat’s shrimp and Roquette plant-based meatballs.
Shiok Meats’ lobster was used to make the lobster flavoured potato chips.
“The ingredient is really versatile, and it works well across different cuisines, including local Asian dishes. Also, it’s fantastic that we can now prepare delicious meals with sustainable crab meat,” said Chef José.
According to latest reports by FAO, demand for crabs is steadily rising. Live crab exports have increased by a 20% to a current valuation of US$652 million, and China and Republic of Korea account for almost 50% of it.
The rising popularity of lobster and shrimp has also led to a 60% increase in production and this has led to a massive decline globally in fish stocks. Carbon emissions of lobster and shrimp are more than that of pork, chicken and beef. Paired with intensive fuel used for trawling purposes, they account for 22% of the total emissions despite just a 6% of global catch landings. Finding sustainable alternatives is the need of the hour.
Shiok Meats is the first company to have successfully developed cell-based crustaceans using a proprietary technology. Their patent-pending technology can help produce crustaceans four times faster as compared to the conventional method.
“Our mission is to develop cell-based crustacean meats that are contributing towards a cleaner and healthier seafood industry and solving for the inefficiencies around global protein production,” stated Dr. Sandhya Sriram, CEO, and Dr. Ka Yi Ling, CTO, Shiok Meats
Shiok Meats recently acquired South East Asia’s ‘first’ cell-based red meat startup, Gaia Foods.