Moolec’s Pink Soybeans Contain Pork Cells Thanks to Molecular Farming Tech

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Molecular farming ingredient company Moolec Science SA says it has achieved an impressive advancement in sustainable meat substitutes: soybeans that taste like pork.

Moolec’s Meat Replacements Program yielded 26.6 percent of total soluble protein in soy seeds via its newly developed “Piggy Sooy”, surpassing its initial projections by a factor of four.

The distinctly pink hue of the soybeans is identical to that of pig meat, the company says. Following the accomplishment, the company is now seeking a patent for its tech, which is expected to provide a smoother regulatory pathway for the future.

Piggy Sooy

“Piggy Sooy represents tangible and visual proof that Moolec’s technology has the capacity to achieve significant yields in plants to produce meat proteins,” Gastón Paladini, CEO & Co-Founder of Moolec, said in a statement. “With this groundbreaking achievement, Moolec consolidates its position as a category creator and a pioneer in Molecular Farming for the food industry. Our plant biology team is writing the history of science in food, I couldn’t be prouder of them.”

Moolec founders (left) Gastón Paladini and (right) Amit Dhingra | Courtesy

Moolec’s achievement reinforces the growing recognition of molecular farming as a viable technique for producing animal proteins. The technology allows plants to function as animal protein factories, displaying an efficiency that surpasses original expectations and has the potential to revolutionize Moolec’s business model.

Molecular farming

A handful of companies like Moolec say using molecular farming is more affordable than other alternative proteins — and, in some cases, more affordable than animal protein itself. The tech essentially turns crops into carriers for animal protein. And unlike other technologies, such as recently-approved cultivated meat, which requires direct animal inputs and significant amounts of energy to produce, molecular farming can be done at scale cheaply.

Moolec is developing multiple meat proteins in plants as functional ingredients to enhance the taste, appearance, texture, and nutrition of meat substitutes. The company also suggests the ingredients’ potential application in the traditional meat processing industry, which currently holds a value of approximately $600 billion.

Photo by CHUTTERSNAP on Unsplash

“This achievement opens up a precedent for the entire scientific community that is looking to achieve high levels of protein expression in seeds via Molecular Farming,” said Amit Dhingra, Ph.D., Chief Science Officer of Moolec.

According to Dhingra, Moolec has developed a unique, successful, and patentable platform for the expression of highly valuable proteins in the seeds of economically important crops such as soybeans. “This platform has the potential to be used across a wide variety of proteins of interest for a broad range of industries, such as the pharma, cosmetic, diagnostic reagents, and other food industries.”


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    We INFORM. We INSPIRE. We EMPOWER. Founded by serial entrepreneur Sonalie Figueiras in 2011, Green Queen is an award-winning sustainability & impact media platform advocating for social & environmental change in Asia. Our mission is to shift consumer behaviour through our authentic, original and ground-breaking content.

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