Italy is the first country to ban cultivated meat, the kind grown in laboratory bioreactors from stem cells. Under a new law put into effect last month, lab-grown meat cannot be produced or marketed in Italy.
The country’s agricultural minister says Italy was proud to impose a ban like this one. Which country might be second on the list isn’t set in stone. Many other countries are allowing and even encouraging the technology to be developed. Singapore is the only country where its people are currently eating cell-based meat.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Food and Drug Administration have approved two kinds of cell-based chicken for human consumption. For regulators in most countries, the BBC says the top issue is food safety. Italy’s ban grows out of concerns that may be of more interest to America’s farmers. The country is unashamedly trying to protect its food traditions and farmers.