International fast-food chain Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC) is developing 3D-printed slaughter-free chicken nuggets, which are set to be in their final stages of testing in Moscow this fall. KFC partnered with Russian company 3D Bioprinting Solutions to create the nuggets using a small amount of animal cells in combination with plant-based materials (such as breading and spices provided by KFC) to create cultured chicken meat grown in a laboratory setting that is more environmentally friendly than traditional animal agriculture and does not require the mass slaughter of animals. Producing chicken meat in this way slashes energy consumption in half, reduces greenhouse gas emissions by 25 fold, and requires 100 times less land than raising chickens for food.
“At KFC, we are closely monitoring all of the latest trends and innovations and doing our best to keep up with the times by introducing advanced technologies to our restaurant networks. [Cultured] meat products are the next step in the development of our ‘restaurant of the future’ concept,” KFC Russia General Manager Raisa Polyakova said. “Our experiment in testing 3D bioprinting technology to create chicken products can also help address several looming global problems. We are glad to contribute to its development and are working to make it available to thousands of people in Russia and, if possible, around the world.”
KFC has recently begun to introduce fully plant-based chicken alternatives in various regions, as well, including in the United States where it expanded its trial of vegan Beyond Fried Chicken—which debuted at a single Atlanta location last summer and sold out within five hours—to more than 50 Southern California locations for a limited time starting today.
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