IntegriCulture Inc. (Headquarters: Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo, CEO: Yuki Hanyu (hereinafter referred to as “IntegriCulture”) developed the Space pickle “Space Salt Jelly Pickles” that can be eaten on Earth and in Space, by utilizing “Space Salt (edible cell culture solution)”, a Space seasoning developed in 2019, based on our cell culture research. This product will be offered as a thank you gift to the supporters recruited by the crowdfunding site READYFOR, starting from October 19, 2020 (Monday).
We just launched the “Space Burger Project”.The ultimate goal is to locally produce and consume hamburgers using hamburger patty made from cultured meat in Space (Mars base, lunar base, etc.), in the 2030s. As a prelude to future projects (first in a series), we have developed a Space pickle “Space Salt Jelly Pickles”, since pickles are also an ingredient for hamburgers.
In this project, we will take on challenges to achieve “Sustainable food production” and “Food QOL” in Space and its extreme conditions.
■ Background for launching the “Space Burger Project”
This project is aimed at pursuing sustainable food production and food QOL in Space, as well as gather attention toward the protein source crisis and environmental issues on Earth, and also to work together to solve social issues.
Currently, there are full-scale researches going on in many countries, such as the lunar base idea and the Mars migration idea, and the possibility of realizing long-term manned Space activities in the near future is increasing. In order to sustainably carry out long-term manned Space activities on the Moon and on Mars, it is essential to secure food locally, and technology that can efficiently produce food with a small number of required resources. There are global studies underway on the food production technology in Space, mainly plant factories and algae culture, but there are still major issues when it comes to securing protein sources and food satisfaction (QOL).
In the midst of these issues, one of the future alternative protein sources that have come to people’s attention is cultured meat, which is produced by culturing animal cells. Meat market demand is expanding rapidly due to global population growth and economic growth. However, livestock meat production requires enormous resources (feed, water, land, etc.) and has a large impact on global warming due to methane gas emissions, making it truly unsustainable. According to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), meat demand is predicted to increase 1.8 times in 2050 compared to 2007, and the conventional livestock meat alone will no longer be able to meet protein demand. One of the solutions to this problem is cultured meat.
According to a report by KEARNEY, the meat market will grow at CAGR of 3% up to 2040, and by 2030, the percentage ratio in the meat market will become 70% of conventional meat to 30% of alternative protein sources (20% vegetable meat + 10% cultured meat). By 2040, it will become 40% conventional meat to 60% of alternative protein sources (25% vegetable meat + 35% cultured meat).
We promote cellular agriculture by utilizing our core technology of cultured meat production (CulNet System, our patented technology), and plan to supply cultured meat to the market in the future (supply to restaurants: after 2025, supply to the general: after 2027). Through our supply of sustainable and ecological meat, we hope to find solutions to social issues as well.
Since these issues are one of the emergent social issues even for us individuals, we started the “Space Burger Project” with a concept: “Making Hamburgers with cultured meat in Space!” which is familiar to everyone. And we have reached out to gather supporters through crowdfunding.
Cultured meat is currently in the research and development stage, and it will be several years before it hits the shelves, and meanwhile, our first project will be our “Prelude” to the Space Burger Project. We chose pickles, which is also an ingredient for hamburgers, and developed them under conditions that are equivalent to production and consumption in Space.
We have been participating in Space agriculture-related challenges such as the Japan AeroSpace Exploration Agency (JAXA)’s Space Exploration Innovation Hub (nickname: TansaX) and SPACE FOODSPHERE, and have been involved in research and development on cell culture meat production in enclosed environments such as the Moon and Mars. Through such activities, we were able to meet Chef Hiroyuki Kuwana, who is also a future food researcher, and under his supervision, we “Selected vegetables and seasonings that can be cultivated and produced in Space”, “Processed the food into an edible form”, and also made it “Nutritious and deliciousness”. As a result, we created jelly pickles that can be eaten as Space food.
The purpose of this crowdfunding is not only to cover the costs of product development and mass production but also to bring people’s attention to sustainability and food QOL in Space, as well as spread awareness to the sustainability of food on Earth. Our goal is to realize Space agriculture that efficiently produces protein sources and various nutrients with the least amount of resources, and also provide satisfaction to food.
Cultured meat production technology is not only extremely useful in Space, but also on Earth where there are concerns on a “Protein crisis” due to global population growth. Therefore, our activities are significant to the 200 trillion yen meat market and we believe it will lead to the improvement of Japan’s food security environment in the future.
< Space Burger Project Roadmap >
2020: Launch of “Space Salt Jelly Pickles” which uses Space seasonings
2021: Launch of cultured foie gras burger using cultured foie gras from Earth
2025: Launch of cultured meat burgers using cultured meat from Earth
203X: Launch of cultured meat burgers using cultured meat from the lunar base
(locally produced for local consumption)
203X: Launch of cultured meat burgers using cultured meat from Mars base
(locally produced for local consumption)
* All the vegetables and meat used above are ingredients that can be produced in Space.
<Space Salt Jelly Pickles Mission Logo>
The mission logo for the first Space Burger Project “Space Salt Jelly Pickles”. The Space Salt is designed to look like a Spacecraft. The Space Burger Project will be creating a mission logo for every future project theme. For this crowdfunding, we plan to create a sticker and hand it out as a thank you gift*.
*Not included in a donation plan that does not include thank you gifts.
■ Contents of crowdfunding
- Concept: “203X, a Hamburger made in Space!”
- Purpose: To gather project funds (product development costs, operating costs) from eager supporters for the “Space Salt Burger Project”, to take on challenges of Sustainability and Food QOL in the near future Space era.
- Site: READYFOR
- Website: https://readyfor.jp/projects/IntegriCulture
- Period: October 19th (Monday) to November 18th (Wednesday), 2020 11 pm
- Target Amount: 500,000 yen (If achieved, our next goal will be 2 million yen)
- Return Plan Amount: 11 (from 3,000 to 50,000 yen. There are plans with and without thank you gifts.)
- Return Plan Highlight
- Naming rights for cultured meat bioreactors (3 units): 3 people (1 person per unit)
- Invitation ticket to our culture foie gras unveiling tasting event
(scheduled for winter 2021): 5 people
- Grilled meat party to discuss the future of cultured meat
(Grilled meat dinner with CEO / CTO, January-March 2021): 3 people
* Please note that depending on the situation of COVID19, we may have to change to an online drinking party. In that case, we will send each participant an A5 grade Wagyu beef (300g).
■ About Space pickles “Space Salt Jelly Pickles”
A jelly-like pickle seasoned with “Space Salt (edible cell culture solution, umami seasoning)”. We will deliver a package with freeze-dried vegetables, seasonings (Space Salt, etc.), and a special container.
Jelly pickles are made by placing ingredients and seasonings in a special container, pouring hot water at 80 degrees Celsius, and cooling. Assuming that it will be eaten as Space food, we provide it in a freeze-dried form (freeze-dried is common for Space food). The pickle liquid is turned into a viscous jelly so that the liquid does not scatter. We also considered the fact that the water heater hot water maximum temperature is 80 degrees at the International Space Station. You can eat it as it is, but you can also use it as a jelly sauce by crushing it into jelly and putting it in a hamburger, or as a jelly sauce for meat or fish dishes or as a dip (sauce for dipping). All the ingredients used and selected as pickles have a track record of cultivation in Space or can be produced.
- Vegetables for pickles: Four kinds of ingredients that have been cultivated in Space are freeze-dried.
- Ingredients: zucchini, cucumber, tomato, strawberry
- Seasonings: Space Salt, citric acid (derived from sweet potato), agar (derived from algae)
- It is possible to make in the International Space Station (ISS), with the hot water heater which provides a maximum temperature of 80 degrees.
- Cooking can be completed simply by pouring hot water, cooling, and hardening (minimum completion time: 2 to 3 hours in the refrigerator)
- Because it is freeze-dried, the expiration date is long and also can be used as a preserved food for disasters on Earth.
■ About our proprietary seasoning “Space Salt ® (edible cell culture solution)”
A Space seasoning made from edible culture solution developed by IntegriCulture in 2019.
Originally developed for cell culture, it contains nutrients useful to the human body such as minerals, amino acids, and vitamins, and also makes way for possibilities as a new seasoning because it has a “saltiness”, “umami” that stimulates our taste.
■ Our success in serving dishes using Space Salt
This is a tasting demonstration of “Moon Dinner 1.0” at an event held on March 2019, hosted by SPACE FOODSPHERE (used to be called SPACE FOOD X), which our company is a member of. Space Salt was used to season the meli-melo steak and green soup. The dinner was also cooked by chef Hiroyuki Kuwana, a future food researcher.
■JAXA’s engagement history in the Space food project
Integraculture, in collaboration with Tokyo Women’s Medical University (Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo), was adopted as TansaX challenge research under the below project theme, for the research proposal program “Space Exploration Innovation Hub (nickname: TansaX)” implemented by the Japan AeroSpace Exploration Agency (JAXA) in 2018. We have achievements in joint research projects related to sustainable food and protein production with few resources in Space.
<The adopted research theme>
Sustainable food and protein production, using light energy and a resource-saving “Algae / Animal cell coculture recycling system”
■ Messages of support to Crowdfunding
- Institute of Advanced Bio-Medical Engineering and Science Tokyo Women’s Medical
Tatsuya Shimizu, Director / Professor
IntegriCulture boldly challenges to accomplish the cultivation of cells to make meat with their own very unique technology. Realizing this, not only solves food problems on Earth but also enables food production in Space, which is extremely important for all human-kind. I’d also like to go to Space someday, so I’m looking forward to making hamburgers in Space as soon as possible.
- General Incorporated Association SPACE FOODSPHERE
Komasa Mizuki, Representative Director
IntegriCulture technology can achieve resource-recycling, ultra-efficient food production, and QOL enhancements, and even in the extreme environment of Space, or on Earth where global warming and food crises are on the rise, the technology is indispensable. We will work together to achieve our goals on Moon and on Mars.
■ About the crowdfunding site “READY FOR”
READYFOR Inc. is Japan’s first crowdfunding service company founded in 2011 with the vision of “Creating a world where we can all realize our dreams”.
■ About SPACE FOODSPHERE, a general incorporated association
In order to solve the common problem of “food” on Earth and in Space, SPACE FOODSPHERE has brought about two big projects: “Complete resource recycling and ultra-high efficiency food supply system” and “Food solution that dramatically improves the QOL of enclosed Spaces”, which creates solutions and promotes social implementation on Earth and in Space. We aim to build a truly sustainable and a well-being future society for all human-kind by passing on our spirit of tackling difficult issues to the next generation.