Cultured Meat and Future Food is a short-form podcast series discussing the role of plant based food, cultivated meat and food technology. The show is focused on asking industry leaders questions for an audience with a non-scientific background. Cultured Meat and Future Food is targeted towards entrepreneurs interested in the food technology space.

Paul Shapiro, Author of “Clean Meat” April 2024

Paul Shapiro joins us back on the Future Food Show to discuss the updated paperback edition of Clean Meat. Purchase the updated edition of Clean Meat on ⁠Amazon⁠ or anywhere books are sold.
Learn more about Paul Shapiro and purchase Clean Meat at ⁠

Thank you for joining us on the future food show. We’re really excited to have Paul Shapiro back on the show. I want to say episode number three, Paul, welcome to the show.

Great to be with you, Alex. I feel like I’m like Tom Brady three peating on this podcast. I’m so honored. It is number three, right?

Because I think we’ve talked about having you on three times. Is this three or four? I, I wish that I remembered that. I should have looked it up, but either way, I’m psyched to be on. It’s a great show. I listened to every episode that you put out. So I’m very grateful to be on as a guest. You do listen to every episode.

And I know that because you always follow up on every episode. And it’s so nice for me to see that. And also I think really cool for the guests. I want to thank you for that. Yeah, of course. It’s a great resource for information about the space and what companies are doing. That’s cool. And as somebody who continues to write about the space, I view it as a very valuable resource.

So hopefully this episode will also be a valuable resource for somebody else too. I’m sure it will be and it’s, you know, no, no I think there, there’s no problem in not knowing whether this is episode three or four. I’m pretty sure it’s three, but because the first episode was recorded back in 2018.

It’s kind of crazy to even think about that. What a different world it was. You know, when we recorded that episode, there were probably half a dozen companies on the planet that were trying to commercialize real meat, slaughter free. It was a really big deal. If a company got a one or 2 million investment even when Cargill put like half a million into a company, it was this really amazing deal.

We thought, wow, I can’t believe that the industry is not only not fighting it, but is actually embracing it. Of course, now there’s more than 150 companies in the space. There’ve been several billion dollars invested. And so I think You know, if you look at that time frame of six years, that’s a lot of progress.

I mean, even the like, if you look at the cost to produce cultivated meat, you know, back then, you know, when Mark Post made that 2013 cultivated burger was 330, 000 U. S. dollars a pound. Per quarter pounder people think that’s the per pound price. That’s the per quarter pound price and now people are talking about making, you know, ten dollar or even hundred dollar burgers.

So those are still too expensive, but it’s a lot cheaper than it was So hopefully that trajectory will keep on going yet at the same time While there’s a lot of progress has been made, I think if you had asked me in 2018, would there be any meaningful commercialization of cultivated meat by 2024? I probably would have said, I thought that that would be the case and indeed there hasn’t been so there are some ways that I think there’s been enormous progress, but in others, you know, it has been maybe the predictions were too optimistic back then.

Well, I want to joke that that 300 k does not even account for inflation. So it would be 500 K for a quarter pound burger today. That’s really funny. I wonder is I wonder if that’s true. So I’ll, I’ll look it up real quick. So in 2013 it is? Yeah, $440,000 in 2024 numbers. So yeah, . Wow. the $440,000 burger.

That’s really funny. So, I, you know, I was reading through some of the, the pages of my copy and I want to say that back in 2018, it just was still called Hampton Creek. I don’t think they had even changed, you know, changed their name or rebranded yet. So, so I, you know, with that. Oh, go ahead. Yeah, when the book the book was, you know, really written in 2016 and 17.

It came out in January of 2018. And by the time it had come out, I think they had just changed their name. So there wasn’t enough time to switch the name from Hampton Creek to Eat Just. That was actually, you know, in writing the, the book. the updated edition of Clean Meat that was Actually like a kind of a nuisance is all these companies have changed their names So it’s like Memphis Meats is now Upside Foods.

Hampton Creek is now Eat Just Clara Foods is now the Every Company. It’s like all these companies. Nobody was content with their names from back then So it presented a little bit of a challenge in the case of the book but the new book which You know really has a lot of updated material and it does account for those name changes Well, it wasn’t just the companies that changed their names because, you know, as an industry, we were calling this technology clean meat back then.

It has gone through several different changes and, you know, now the industry refers to it as cultivated meat. But when I hear clean meat, I always think about your book and you know, of course the book keeps the title, which is actually kind of nice. It’s funny you say that. You made a comment about this to me recently.

Today, when people are talking about Queen Meat, they’re usually talking about the book, not the actual topic. But, I will say, like, if you have a Google News work for the term Queen Meat, you actually do get a number of hits for news articles that are still referring to it as Queen Meat in some iteration.

But, yes, that is obviously a topic of discussion in the new book, is nomenclature. At the time of the book’s writing, Queen Meat. The main debate among proponents of this technology was really cultured meat versus clean meat. And after the book came out what essentially happened was the meat industry was getting more and more involved in the space, both through investments and other collaborations.

And some of those meat trade associations were offended by the term clean meat, as you could imagine. I mean, oil companies don’t like the term clean energy, obviously. Because it implies that their product is dirty. And so you had some companies that had taken investment from these, these meat companies who are particularly sensitive to their concern about being offended by this term.

And so they proposed changing it to cell based meat. And I still remember at the 2018 Good Food Conference in September of 2018, there was like a big huddle of the various budding companies in this industry. And not all, but some of them did agree to change it to cell based to accommodate this concern.

And, you know, the idea was there are three categories of meat, plant based meat, and animal based meat, and now cell based meat. The problem is that, you know, first of all, it’s not very descriptive. because all meat is cell based, whether it’s made from soybeans or made from animals or made from slaughtered animals or whatever, like it’s still coming from cells.

And second, there is the problem that cell based meat just sounds very foreign and very unappealing to people. It consistently performs poorly among favorability in polling. It does perform in polling well when you ask for what term makes this sound the most differentiated from conventional meat, but when you ask about actual favorability of the term, meaning, you know, willingness to purchase, interest in trying it, It rates very poorly, and that’s because nobody wants to eat cells, right?

Obviously, everything we eat is made of cells for the most part, but nobody wants to eat cells. It sounds disgusting. People like science to be in their phones, but not necessarily in their food. And so there was a backlash against this term for many of the companies in the space that felt like, Things have gone too far on this term that it had gone from a very positive term, clean meat, which was which pulled very favorably among consumers to now one that was not neutral, but was rather negative.

It almost sounded pejorative. It’s not as bad as lab grown meat, but still pretty bad. And so that’s why the Good Food Institute. Ran some studies and basically found that cultivated meat was perceived either neutrally or somewhat positively compared to cell based meat. It didn’t perform as well as clean meat, but still, considering the concerns that people had about offending the meat industry, it was something that was switched to.

And so now, You have near total unanimity within the industry, at least among the English speaking countries where countries where companies are based of using the term cultivated meat. And so the question was, you know, should I change the title of the book, which first of all is It’s a very difficult thing to do to change a title of a book, but second I’m not so sure that people shouldn’t use clean meat.

It, it pulls extremely favorably, better than others. It’s accurate in that it is literally cleaner from a food safety perspective, you know, when you’re. slaughtering animals, you have to treat the meat almost like toxic waste, you know, like you have to separate meat in your grocery basket. If it touches your kitchen counter, you need to disinfect it.

If it touches your hands, you need to wash your hands. That’s because the meat literally has feces on it, like salmonella, E. coli, Campylobacter, these are intestinal pathogens that can sicken us if we don’t cook the crap out of the meat, literally cooking the crap out of the meat. But with clean meat or cultivated meat, you don’t have to worry so much about Those intestinal pathogens because you’re not growing the intestines at all You’re growing the muscle or the fat and you don’t have as much worry about intestinal pathogens You’re more likely probably to infect the meat with your own hands than it is to infect you So from a food safety perspective, it’s accurate and it’s an allusion to clean energy clean meat So i’m not, you know on a crusade to have people change the term back to clean meat or anything I I don’t you know, I don’t think that’s up to the companies that are marketing it themselves but I didn’t want to change the title because I, I frankly think it’s a provocative title that is likely to you know, evoke interest in readers.

So that’s why it remained the same. It’s a good book title. I think this is a good point, actually, to kind of stop and reintroduce the book because we are actually seeing a new wave of listeners starting to come on the show. I’m hoping that this episode will be one of the first episodes that somebody who is just hearing about this technology listens to.

So can you give us a general introduction to actually, the book, Clean Meat, and maybe not so much about the updates, but just the book in general? Yeah, sure. So, this is the first book that came out on this topic. And it’s called Clean Meat, How Growing Meat Without Animals Were a Revolutionized Dinner in the World.

Simon and Schuster put it out in 2018. And, you know, essentially the book chronicles the Race between the entrepreneurs, the scientists and the investors who are all again racing to commercialize the world’s first slaughter free meat. And so the book tells the history of the cellular agriculture movement.

It’s not a science book. It’s really more of like a pop science or a pop business book, which. Tells the story of the people behind this industry. Everything going back literally to the 1800s when people were writing about this to the 1930s when people like Churchill were writing about it to, you know, around the year 2000 when people started actually making it with a NASA funded grant to make this happen.

To grow goldfish muscle outside of the goldfish to Willem Van Eelen’s crusade to try to commercialize this and getting the world’s first ever patent on this all the way up to companies actually being founded to commercialize this product. And so the book frankly did better than I would have dreamt.

I didn’t know what type of reaction it would get. I had never published a book. There was some level of hubris in writing it, but I was very grateful that Simon and Schuster And it debuted on the Washington Post bestsellers list, outselling a lot of really popular books from by people like Ray Dalio and Neil deGrasse Tyson that week that it came out in January of 2018.

It got really good reviews in the Wall Street Journal and NPR. And the book again, was pretty popular. You know, it did a lot better than I would have dreamt. And it was transformative in my own life because it, it essentially offered me two pathways in my life. The first was I could keep on writing about the people who I thought were going to solve this problem that has animated my own life for the last 30 years, which is how to wean humanity off of our animal based diet.

And I could keep on writing about those people, or I could just become one of them. And ultimately, I chose the latter and ended up starting my own alternative protein company called The Better Meco, which does not do cultivated animal cells, but rather does mycoprotein based fermentations. But it, it really had a transformative effect on my life.

And I’m proud to say on a lot of other people’s lives, I still hear regularly from people, even six years after the publication, that they invested in a company, Or they started their own company or they joined a company because of reading this book. And so, you know, I often think that fiction generally is more compelling than nonfiction.

Like, it’s very rare that you hear of nonfiction books that change people’s lives. It, you know, it can, it happens for sure. But it’s very easy to think about books. It’s very easy to think about novels. That had a transformative effect on people. Brave New World, Animal Farm, 1984, Fahrenheit 451. Even on the right, you have people say like Fountainhead or Atlas Shrugged really had a transformative effect on their psychology.

But it’s hard to think about non fiction books that really change a lot of people’s lives. But just on the feedback that I get, which is of course anecdotal, but I’ve, I’ve really heard from so many people now, again, even to this very day in 2024 were people who told me that. You know, their wives were impacted by this and their career choices were impacted by it.

And that is something of which I’m very proud. Really hope that I have helped to popularize this movement to create alternatives to the slaughter based animal meat system that we have right now. Well, you definitely have. And, and I mean, another data point is. This is us starting not only this podcast, incorporating SVC MS or the Silicon Valley Cultured Meat Symposium to, to host events about the topic.

And then eventually, you know, Anita and I went on really Anita’s brainchild to create balletic food. So in many ways, you have a data point right here a little bit funny that. Both Better Meat Co and Baletic are not cultured meat. I wanted to ask you, when you were writing Clean Meat, did you think that you would start either an alternative protein company or a cultivated meat company?

You know, it’s such a good, it’s such a good question. So, you know, when I was writing it, my only goal was to help inform and popularize this space. I was really concerned that, you know, You don’t get a second chance to make a first impression, and I was very concerned that maybe the first impression people would get of this industry would be from its detractors, people who were actually trying to bury this very, very nascent industry while it’s still in the cradle, or I mean, maybe even in that case, still in the womb.

And so that was my number one goal was to bring to life the stories and the motivations of the people who are actually waging this movement to try to divorce animal slaughter from meat. And so I think I accomplished that goal in telling their stories. And because this was really the first book on the topic and the bestselling book on the topic still today, I think I did accomplish that.

However, I knew that I was already becoming persuaded of my own thesis and really like a thesis of the book is that technology is needed to wean ourselves off of the factory farming of animals. You know, it’d be great if people wanted to, you know switch to bean and rice burritos and lentil soup and hummus wraps.

I love those foods. I wish more people would eat them. But people want meat. You know, meat demand is rising all around the world for the most part, and we have to give them meat. It’d be kind of like saying, oh, wouldn’t it be great if people would just walk and bike more? Well, you know, people seem to really like to drive, so it’s pretty important that we make cars that don’t rely on fossil fuels.

And so, you know, I looked at the history of how we have stopped exploiting animals for other purposes, and pretty much every single time, pretty much every single time, it’s because a new invention is being invented. rendered the old way obsolete. You know, we used to whip horses in order to get around for thousands of years.

That was the fastest mode of transport and nobody stopped abusing horses for transportation or labor because they cared about horses. They stopped because the internal combustion engine was invented. Similarly, we used to harpoon whales in order to get our lighting, and you know, the main reason why we stopped harpooning whales was because New methods of lighting were invented, primarily kerosene followed by electricity that were just cleaner and more efficient than whale oil was.

You know, we used to have to live pluck geese for thousands of years. That was how we made pens. And, you know, people wrote with goose quills, goose quills, and it’s a very torturous thing to do. And nobody stopped live plucking geese because they cared about geese. They stopped because metal fountain pens were invented and it was a much more efficient way to write.

You didn’t have to stop and dip your, quill into an inkwell. You didn’t have to constantly sharpen the quill tip. It was just a much better way to write. And so that’s three categories of animal exploitation that had been around literally for millennia each that were displaced within a very short time frame by a new technology.

And then if you try to think about, well, where are there cases of animal exploitation that were ended because of humane sentiment, which is what I had devoted my career to prior for a couple decades prior to writing this book, it’s pretty hard to find any. Example of that. It’s really hard to think of any whole category of entrenched animal exploitation.

That was essentially eradicated by humane sentiment, and I’m not saying it can’t happen. I’m just saying it’s pretty hard to think of any examples of it. And so I was already persuaded of my own thesis that while I thought humane campaigns were very important. And very valuable that we really needed more technology and innovation that could render some of these exploitative systems obsolete And as a result, I thought yeah, maybe I will join or start a company in this space Maybe i’ll just write about the space and popularize it.

I wasn’t really sure what I was going to do after the book tour And it seemed very plausible to me that I would continue writing about it given how the book performed But I wasn’t really sure You And I, I frankly, you know, came to the belief that, you know, these people who are starting companies, to me, they seemed, you know, almost like on a different level, right?

Like, and, and I was like, well, I don’t, you know, have an MBA from Harvard. I, you know, I wasn’t a microbiologist or a tissue engineer. I didn’t have millions of dollars to invest in, in venture capital. Like I, you know, I was just basically an animal advocate who had devoted myself to public policy lobbying for a very long time.

But as I wrote the book, I was like, And continued interviewing the people who had started these companies, it became very clear to me that they were not somehow super people, that they were just mere mortals like myself. And many of them seemed to have not that much experience before they started their companies.

And so, ironically, in writing this book, they became far more human to me, and that gave me the assurance that maybe I could start my own company. And whether that was a good idea or not, you know, time will, time will tell. But I’m glad to have started a company. I’ve been running the Better Meat Co.

for the last six years, and I feel extremely grateful to have had this continuing experience of building something from nothing and seeing a new technology develop that I think could really go a very long way toward helping to solve this problem. And to answer your question directly about, you know, whether I thought I would start a cultivated animal product company, frankly, the reason that I didn’t was because in writing the book, it became extremely clear to me that this was not.

A technology that was going to be making a meaningful dent in the problem in the extremely near term. You know, even the most wildly optimistic predictions for cultivated meat suggest now that, you know, maybe it will be in grocery stores by 2030. So, you know, that’s what upside food says, you know, their COO, Amy Chen said in a recent interview, they expect to be on grocery store shelves by the year 2030.

And so. You know, even that, you know, you have to ask yourself, when will it be 1 percent of the meat demand that there is? I mean, even plant based meat, which has a much greater head start, is not even at 1 percent of total animal meat demand in the United States or the world yet. Despite the fact that it’s in every grocery store and, you know, every big box grocery store and that’s on fast food menus and so on.

You know, plant based meat is still not there. Now, you know, you could argue, well, when cultivated meat is, you know, Made widely available. It’s going to be so much better than plant based meat from a sensory perspective that it’ll catch like fire. Maybe that’s true. Maybe it’s not. That’d be wonderful.

If that happened. But even under, you know, if you look at the projections of the most well funded companies in the space, you know, they say that, you know, by 2030, they hope to have these factories that will be producing a few tens of millions of pounds of product every year, even if their projections turn out to be true.

You know, let’s say, you know, 30, 50, even 100 million pounds of meat. I mean, you know, there’s a hundred billion pounds of meat produced in the United States alone every year. So, you know, you’re, you’re talking about like a rounding error in the total meat industry. And so that’s why I ended up while writing a book about cultivated meat that I, I’m extremely enthusiastic about the future of the cultivated meat industry.

I think of it more as making a dent in the further future. Then I do for what I’m doing, which is microprotein fermentation, which is ready to scale today. In fact, one company, Korn, Q U O R N, has already scaled it and is already producing food that they make hundreds of millions of dollars of revenue from annually from bioreactors.

You know, I mean if you go to Korn’s headquarters in the UK, They’ve got, you know, a whole slew of 150, 000 liter bioreactors that are 40 meters tall. It’s like 120 feet tall, churning out, Over a hundred SKUs of products of micro that are microbial we based so it’s not animal cells But you know, it is an amazing feat of biotechnology meeting the food industry, you know People talk about this hat this technology hasn’t scaled.

We don’t have these huge bioreactors. Well for fungi fermentation you do Like corn is already doing it, you know, 150, 000 liter reactors that have been, that have been running literally for decades now. And so that gave me the hope that maybe with mycoprotein fermentation, it was more immediately scalable and that we could come up with something that was different than what corn was doing by using different organisms and different processes and different business models and create something important.

And so I love corn. I think it’s a great company and I eat their products. And I hope that what BetterMeatCo is doing augments what they’re doing by creating new culinary experiences from microbial fungi. I want to ask you about kind of like the origin story of the book, because you were mentioning that there are certain, you know, historic novels that have made big impacts in the world, you know, clean, you know, your book, clean meat has definitely, definitely with those in the industry, those who I’ve, I’ve known, I’ve grown to know.

Made a big impact for them, but the origin story of the book, I think you once told me that you originally started writing actually a fiction, a novel about about the technology. Can you tell us a little bit, a little bit about that and how that transitioned to kind of, and I liked the way you said it, it was kind of like a sci fi business type of book or how did you describe it?

Yeah, I wouldn’t say, yeah. So first let me say, yes, you’re absolutely right. I did actually write a novel about the human animal relationship, and I still hope to publish it, but in short, nobody would publish it at the time when I wrote this thing in like 2015 and 16. And I was really, you know, I wrote this, like the original, Manuscript was like a hundred thousand words.

So I’d really like poured myself into this thing And I really thought I think these aspirations of the book really succeeding Unfortunately, it didn’t succeed. Literally not one publisher took it and I did a lot of publisher meetings and I kept hearing from publishers You know To the extent that anybody knows who you are, they don’t want to read fiction from you.

They want to read non fiction from you. So if you have a non fiction proposal, let us know. And, you know, I really wanted to publish this novel. In fact, I still really want to publish the novel, but I thought, okay, well, what’s the most important thing That no one else is writing about that I believe would do good for animals on the planet.

And I came up with a list of ideas and this one was definitely, I thought, the one that interested me the most. And I didn’t even put it on the list myself. One day after work in Maryland, I went for a run. with my then colleague, whose name is Kenny Torella, who now is a writer for Vox Media. But we were running together through the woods, and I was telling him about my idea to maybe write a non fiction book, and he said, why don’t you put something on lab grown meat on, on there?

Wouldn’t that be cool? And I, I’d been a champion for this technology for a long time. In fact, I had known Jason Matheny, who was the original founder of New Harvest since before he even founded New Harvest. And I had been interviewed for a number of publications about my point of view on this topic. So I was already accustomed to speaking about it publicly, but I thought, yeah, you know, nobody’s written a book on this.

I think, yeah, maybe there is something here and I could tell these stories. And so I wrote up, like, a 10, 000 word proposal, which was essentially, you know, an outline and a a sample chapter and you know, this is gonna be a gross oversimplification of what actually happened, but Simon and Schuster bought it and published it.

And so I got very fortunate. You know, I had never published a book before. I didn’t know what to expect. I didn’t have any experience in this realm. And my only experience even writing a book was failure essentially since then I have actually gone back and dramatically revised that novel. So now it’s like around 70 000 words And I think it’s a very good novel.

I really hope to publish it one day So if somebody listening to this interview is in the publishing industry or knows somebody You know, I would really love to get that in the world. In fact, I told my wife, she was asking me what I hope to achieve before I die still. And I said, I don’t want to die without this novel being published.

I’d really love to see it. So anyway, if you’re listening and you want to you want to take a look, I’d be, I’d be very happy to talk with you about it. Well, I wish we had enough listeners to say that we could put a call out for, for crowdfunding. So if everybody contributes 1, no, no, no, it’s not the money.

It’s the publisher, right? Like I you know, I could self publish it. My concern is that, you know, Not that many people would see it. You know, most self published books don’t get read that much. But when you have like a, a publisher, I mean, even just, just an example, like, you know, Simon Schuster for the upcoming updated paperback edition of Queen Meat, you know, they’re running all types of publicity for it.

Right now there’s a contest on Goodreads where people can enter the contest and they’re going to give away free, a free 40 copies. And I just looked at it today and over a thousand people have entered the contest so far. So, You know, it’s like, it’s just, it’s, it’s hard to go it alone. There are examples of self published books that do well that certainly happens, but they’re anomalous.

It’s, it’s rare that self published books do very well. Yeah. And I think, you know, for this technology and educating people about the technology, also just the amount of distribution, like you can really pick up, aside from Amazon, you could pick up clean meat in pretty much every bookstore, right. Or, or, or, you know, most bookstores in the U S.

And, and so maybe this is actually a good transition to the update. So, you know, tell us exactly when the new update will be released and where to get it or pre order it. Cool. Yeah, it’s going to come out on April 9th, 2024, and it is available anywhere the books are sold. So you can pre order it on Amazon or Barnes and Noble or wherever books are sold, and it’s an updated paperback edition.

So if you get the hard copy, you’ll still get the 2018 edition, but if you get the paperback, you’ll get the 2024 edition. And the updates are many fold. They’re not only looking at just, you know, updated stories about companies in the space, but there are sections about the nomenclature debate, about the regulatory approvals, about the first sales of the product, about controversies over FBS or fetal bovine serum and its elimination.

It’s a section about the the very widely discussed. Counter story that came out a few years ago essentially writing the obituary for this industry And so you know, the book was the updated edition was completed in the summer of 2023 So it does not include, you know things like the very recent new york times obituary Which was written by the same person who wrote that counter obituary a few years ago but It is a much updated version of the 2018 edition, and so even if you read the 2018 edition six years ago, I think it’s highly worth reading the new edition for sure.

But I think there’s probably a lot of people who have entered the space, since it’s a much larger space, who maybe haven’t read the first edition and will benefit more from reading the second edition than the first. But the book still does tell the story. About the history of cellular agriculture. And I think that in and of itself is an evergreen story that is constantly being written as the world continues turning and more and more developments occur.

But somebody needs to tell the story about how this industry even came to be. And that’s really the goal of this book. As somebody who might be picking it up for the first time, you know, what should that reader do? After finishing the book, is there any kind of, you know, call to action that, you know, you would be very pleased that, you know, they would move forward and do after reading it?

And before you answer, I want to, you know, I want to read actually the dedication you have in the original book, which reads, Dedicated to every person who sees an apparently intractable problem and sets about laborously tireless, or sets about laboring tirelessly to solve it. Confident in the words of Nelson Mandela, it always seems impossible until it’s done.

So any actions, call to action you’d like a reader to make after finishing the book? Yeah, I appreciate that Alex. So obviously the best thing after finishing the book is to buy several copies for your friends and family. But after you’ve done that, my hope is that People will become advocates for this industry, both cultivated meat and other alternative proteins.

This is not a book that is meant merely to entertain and inform, though I do think it does both of those things, but also to inspire and to inspire people to take action. Maybe they’ll invest in one of these companies. Maybe they’ll join one of these companies. Maybe they’ll start one of their own companies.

Maybe they’re a news journalist who wants to cover this space. Maybe they’re a regulator who now understands the space better than they might have otherwise understood it. There’s a whole host of ways, you know, maybe you’re just somebody who’s gonna promote the space online to your friends and family so that the first time they hear about this type of technology, they don’t say yuck, but rather they say yum.

There’s a whole host of things that you can do from very minor like posting on social media to more major, which are career changing or at least maybe in some way altering the course of your life. So that’s what I hope will happen that the book will inform. It’ll entertain and it will inspire.

And I, I feel confident that the first edition of the book did that. And I’m very hopeful that the second edition does that too. Excellent. I’d like to add one to that list. Maybe start a podcast on the topic as well. Cause we do need more. Yeah, no, that’s good. You know, I heard that Doug Grant’s podcast Brave New Meat is no longer publishing.

So that’s a shame. This is a great podcast, obviously. And I will note that on the podcast that I host and that I’ve been hosting for the last six years, which is called the Business for Good podcast, I’m currently doing an entirely cultivated meat series, will it be about 10 episodes in a row? Where they’re going to drop weekly on Fridays already two of them are out which was with josh tetrick the ceo of goodmeat And nia gupta the ceo of fork and good.

We’ve got mark post The ceo of mosa meat isha tatar from new harvest uma valeti and a whole host of other people Who are going to be on this series, talking about the way that they see this industry, because you know, the headlines are quite negative right now. There’s a lot of more ways around the space and investors are pulling back from this space right now, at least, you know, hopefully only temporarily.

But I wanted to offer a chance to the Leaders in the cultivated meat movement to give their own perspective in their own words, not in soundbites or one sentence in a news story, but rather for, you know, 30 or 40 minute conversation to give their thoughts about what’s happening in the space, what’s still needed in order to succeed and to scale and what do they think about the claim?

I mean, because, you know, there’s really two detractors of this industry. Now there’s the detractors who say this can never work. Right. There’s people who say like this technology just cannot work. And so it is a waste of time and resources. And then there’s another set of detractors who say this is such a threat to the current meat industry that we ought to try to ban it.

And that’s why you see states like Florida actually passing legislation literally to criminalize the sale of these products. So, you know, these are two interesting sets of detractors. One who says this isn’t a threat, it’s never going to succeed. And the others who said, we feel it is such a threat that we want to pass laws banning it.

And so I think it’s far less. Compelling to hear the founders in this space talking about that ladder. You know, talking about, you know, what’s happening in Florida, obviously they’re going to decry those efforts. But the real question that I am very eager to hear them answer is whether they think it’s true that this just can’t scale now, maybe they’re rationalizing their own companies and saying, no, it can scale, but it’s still interesting to hear them after years of working and raising, you know, in some cases, hundreds of millions of dollars each to ask them.

You know, is there anything that you’ve learned that makes you feel like it can’t scale? Like, do you think maybe it won’t work? And so I’m, I’m eager to release all of these episodes and let people hear from the founders themselves. I’m definitely excited to listen and wherever you are currently listening to this episode, So take a look at the description, the link to Business for Good podcast along with Paul Shapiro’s profile will be right there.

Paul, I wanted to ask you as we close up, do you have any last insights or thoughts for our listeners today? You know, it’s actually is in the vein of the quote from Nelson Mandela that you read a few minutes ago, that it always seems impossible until it’s done. You know, people were writing obituaries for the electric vehicle 15 years ago, and it turned out it wasn’t true.

So for that. You know, electric vehicles are now increasingly in prom in prominence, and you have a number of states that say, and and even car companies that say they’re going to phase out gas powered cars. So, you know, something that 15 years ago went from being allegedly impossible to make work, now appears to be inevitable.

And that doesn’t mean that the progress was self executing. It doesn’t mean, no, electric cars were inevitable. It only happened because of the tireless work of so many people who worked and labored so hard to make new inventions and start companies that actually led to the world where anybody who’s looking into the future knows that the future is going to be an electrified future for the vehicle industry.

We don’t know how long it will take, but anybody looking at it knows which way the wind is blowing. The same is happening right now for alternative meat. People are writing the obituaries for this industry, not just cultivated meat, but plant based meat as well. And I would venture to say that those predictions.

Of this industry’s demise might be right and they might be wrong, but it is incumbent upon those of us who want those predictions to be wrong to work hard to ensure that we invent new technologies and we advocate for this industry so that we can one day get to a point where people will say the same thing that you don’t know how long it’s going to take.

until we wean humanity off of our dependence and addiction to raising animals for food and factory farms. But we know which way the wind is blowing and we know what the future is going to hold. And that’s going to mean a protein industry that is far less reliant on the exploitation of animals. That’s what I’m working toward.

I know that’s probably, if you’re listening to this podcast, that’s what you’re working toward. And I would only suggest that the progress is not and will not be self executing. It is not enough simply to cheer from the sidelines that we have to actually get on the field to play the game and to make progress and move the ball down the field so that we can get to a better future.

Thank you very much, Paul. Clean meat, how growing meat without animals will revolutionize dinner and the world paperback updated paperback edition being released on April 9th. Paul, thank you so much for being on the show. It’s my honor. Thanks so much, Alex.