La revue Viandes et produits carnés

La revue française de la recherche en viandes et produits carnés  ISSN  2555-8560

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How to meet the expectations of the "Egalim" law in the beef sector?

Just before January 1st, 2022, the date at which 50% of the products served in collective restaurants must be from sustainable and quality sectors, the New-Aquitaine region and the Direction Régionale de l’Agriculture et de l’Alimentation de Nouvelle-Aquitaine (DRAAF NA) initiated a call-for-project aimed at supporting the development of local food circuits and food projects in the territories. It is within this context that a brand of meat “viande bovine locale” was born in Nouvelle-Aquitaine based on an important partnership between the different actors of the meat sector in the region. In parallel to this, a sampling of regional school restaurants was carried out and a hundred of them were surveyed at the end of 2019 and the beginning of 2020 in order to identify the questions of professionals with regards to the EGalim law, and to determine their expectations in terms of local beef. The professionals surveyed identified several obstacles to the application of the EGalim law in their establishments, in particular the additional costs involved or the constraints related to the logistical implementation. However, they indicated a desire to buy locally and/or to develop partnerships with local producers. They also expressed a strong interest in the development of local meat chains.

"Cellular Meat": Is it possible? Is it good? Is this acceptable?

Although there is a consensus about the challenges in agriculture, food and environment, the innovations developed to respond to them are varied. Among these, “cultured meat” is a subject that raises many questions to which this conference attempted to answer in part by combining the opinions of two start-ups in the sector and of French experts in agriculture, animal husbandry and human nutrition. While culture of muscle cells is a well-known technique, many technical and economic obstacles remain to be solved in order to move to large-scale production. Although the cost has been reduced and will continue to decrease, it is still high to be competitive. In addition, scientists from academic research are asking for precise information to share, in particular about the composition of culture media and of products, as well as production efficiency. Several opinions were expressed to stress that these products could not be called “meat” from a biological, semantic and legal point of view, as well as under Community regulations, they are considered as "novel foods". Regarding the environmental impact or the composition of the products, it is difficult to give precise answers because only a few academic research studies are available or conclusive. The debates focused on the available knowledge, reassuring hypotheses or concerns expressed by experts, in particular by comparison with other solutions suggested to feed humanity (such as reducing food waste or changing our agricultural practices and our eating habits). In this context, the issue of animal welfare is also central as well as the level of potential acceptance of "cultured meat" by consumers, which is still difficult to estimate.

La "viande in vitro" : cultiver des cellules musculaires à destination alimentaire

For the past 20 years, researchers have been trying to produce, in the laboratory, cultures of animal cells for food consumption. "In vitro meat" is branded as a disruptive innovation addressing the problems of animal farming. Where does it come from and who promotes this project? What are the technical obstacles to industrial scale-up, the research strategies, and the challenges of bringing to market? This note provides some answers and takes stock of the situation of animal cells cultures for human consumption. The first section reviews the history of projects to replace livestock products with alternative proteins. The second shows how food tech took on the "in vitro meat" project, and underlines its current technical limits. Finally, the last section addresses the challenges of its marketing and integration into the food supply.

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