Soon, milk substitutes won’t require soy-based products, oats, or nuts. Synthetic cow’s milk, cultivated by artificially reproducing the proteins in casein and whey, will offer a dairy alternative that matches conventional dairy’s mouthfeel, texture, and temperature resistance. Casein genes are added to yeast and other microflora to produce proteins, which are purified and transformed using plant-based fats and sugars. Perfect Day makes lab-grown dairy products— yogurt, cheese, and ice cream—that are now sold in thousands of US grocery stores. New Culture is developing animal-free cheeses for pizza that stretch, melt, and taste like what you’d find at your favorite local restaurant. Nestlé and Danone, two of the largest food and beverage corporations, have been on an acquisition spree, buying lab-grown dairy startups around the world. In the next few years, the focus will be on scaling cultured dairy operations and lowering costs of production.
Access to food is a priority