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The first 3D bio-printed cultivated fish product has been revealed by Steakholder Foods, formerly MeaTech 3D, a manufacturer of 3D-printed cultivated meat.

The most recent prototype was a ready-to-cook grouper fillet that was printed using unique bio-inks and grouper cells that were supplied by Umami Meats.

Steakholder Foods and Umami Meats are collaborating to create a scalable method for producing structured cultivated fish products using the company’s specialized 3D bio-printing technology and bio-inks thanks to a grant from the Singapore-Israel Industrial R&D Foundation (SIIRD). This 3D fish printing marks a fruitful and significant turning point in their collaboration.

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Arik Kaufman, CEO of Steakholder Foods, said: “We’re excited to be working with Umami Meats to develop 3D-printed structured fish products that have the same great taste and texture as traditionally caught fish, without harming the environment.”

The world’s first cultivated fish fillet

At its facilities in Israel, Steakholder Foods held a tasting event to commemorate this accomplishment. The restaurant’s chef, Moran Lidor, served up signature fish dishes in the Israeli and Singaporean styles at a “grouper fish chef’s table,” where customers could sample them. 

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Image: Steakholder Foods

Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, along with Umami Meats CEO Mihir Pershad and other notables, went to the Steakholder Foods facility to see 3D printing in action and taste the cultivated fish for the first time.

“We are delighted to have produced the world’s first whole fillet cultivated fish in partnership with Steakholder Foods. In this first tasting, we showcased a cultivated product that flakes, tastes, and melts in your mouth exactly like excellent fish should. In the coming months, we intend to announce our plans for bringing this world-class cultivated fish to the market,” commented Mihir Pershad, CEO of Umami Meats.

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Image: Steakholder Foods

Expanding Partnerships 

Steakholder Foods claims that after receiving the grouper’s fish cells from Umami Meats, its team worked to modify its bio-inks for a prototype of the grouper with the best possible taste and texture. The Israeli food technology company asserts that it can replicate the flaky texture of cooked fish in a product after printing thanks to patent-pending technology.

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Image: Steakholder Foods

The ability to adapt its bio-inks to external cell lines, according to the company, is a crucial step toward commercializing its 3D bioprinter. It demonstrates that the platform’s ability to create structured hybrid and cultivated products from a variety of species makes it possible to work with other industry players.

“Having created a customized bio-ink that works effectively with Umami’s cells and optimized the taste and texture to meet the high standards of consumers, we anticipate expanding our collaborations to a greater variety of species with additional partners,” added Kaufman.