On May 7, new documentary Meat the Future will be available on streaming platform CBC Gem (which is limited to Canadian users) through new series “Hot Docs at Home”—an online iteration of the 2020 Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Film Festival which was postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic. 

Directed by Liz Marshall of animal-rights film The Ghosts in Our Machine, the film follows cultured-meat company Memphis Meats as it works on its mission of making traditional animal agriculture obsolete. Founded by cardiologist Uma Valeti, Memphis Meats uses a small amount of animal cells and grows it in a bioreactor to create real meat without the need of animal slaughter. Meat the Future will explore questions such as, “Is cultured meat a solution to climate change, world hunger, and the abysmal treatment of factory farmed animals?” and, “Will consumers want it, or is it Frankenfood?” 

Marshall created the film between 2016 and 2019 in collaboration with Valeti and Good Food Institute Executive Director Bruce Friedrich in an effort to document the cellular agriculture industry and its potential to displace animal agriculture. “Documentaries are powerful platforms to unveil ideas, inspire empathy, and motivate social change. After spending years making consciousness-raising films shot around the globe, and after the successful release of The Ghosts In Our Machine, I was looking to follow a visionary, solution-focused story, and in 2015 came across the emergence of cellular agriculture,” Marshal said. “The future of cell-based meat is unknown, but its revolutionary promise and journey into the world … is a story that stands the test of time.” 

In January, Memphis Meats raised $161 million in investment capital—the largest investment ever raised by a cell-based meat brand—to increase its team from 45 to 135 employees, and to build a pilot facility in an undisclosed location to begin scaling the production of its cell-based meat, a step that will bring it much closer to launching its flagship products to consumers.

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