A Newcastle-based company has announced its goal of becoming the first in the UK to produce 100% animal-free "meat".
The tissue engineering company 3D Bio-Tissues Limited (3DBT) produces human corneas for eye transplants and is developing skin-care and meat substitute technologies.
After raising £1.75 million in investment 3DPT said it is "focused on producing the first 100% lab-grown meat in the next 12 months".
It has patented technologies including an animal-free cell growth agent, which it says will also help it produce vegan-friendly leather.
“Our technology has the potential to improve the lives of millions of people around the world".
Executive director Geoff Baker of BSF said the technologies at the company's disposal could "improve the lives of millions" by reducing greenhouse gas emissions generated by livestock farming".
"Our successful acquisition of 3DBT provides investors with exposure to an extremely exciting suite of IP which can be used for multiple applications across numerous fast-growing and transformative markets, including the lab grown meat and leather markets, as well as skin care," he commented after the takeover.
"The skilled 3DBT team has already produced the world’s first human corneas, which is a fantastic feat given that 12.7m people worldwide are currently awaiting a cornea transplant."
He added that the lab-grown meat market is expected to grow at an annual rate of 410% to 2030.
"Importantly, demand for high-quality alternative protein sources is high, driven by thecritical need to reduce global greenhouse gases, for which livestock farming is responsible for a staggering 24%," Mr Baker continued.
"Our technology has the potential to improve the lives of millions of people around the world, and we would like to take this opportunity to thank our investors for their support in delivering this exciting milestone."