BERKELEY, Calif. — Upside Foods, a leading cultivated meat, poultry and seafood company, announced Wednesday that it obtained label approval for its cultivated chicken from the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
With an approved label in hand, Upside is now working with the USDA to obtain a Grant of Inspection for its Engineering, Production, and Innovation Center (EPIC), the last remaining item in the pre-market regulatory process before the company can commercially produce and sell its cultivated chicken in the United States.
The label uses the term "cell-cultivated chicken."
As a cultivated meat product grown directly from real animal cells, Upside's chicken is subject to the same labeling requirements as conventionally produced meat products. Upside Foods has now demonstrated full compliance with all pre-market requirements for labeling and can begin commercial production and sales as soon as it obtains a GOI from USDA.
Upside's chicken will proudly bear the USDA mark of inspection on its packaging after it passes USDA inspection.
"The USDA's approval of our label marks a major step forward towards our goal of creating a more humane and sustainable food system," said Uma Valeti, CEO and founder of Upside Foods. "We're excited to continue working with the USDA to achieve our next milestone: a Grant of Inspection (GOI) for our facility. Obtaining the USDA's GOI will clear the way for commercial production and sales and allow us to bring our delicious Upside chicken to consumers for the first time."
After completing the next and final regulatory step, Upside's cultivated chicken will be launched in limited quantities through select restaurant partners, starting with three-Michelin star Chef Dominique Crenn's restaurant Bar Crenn in San Francisco. Launch details will be shared at a later date, including information on how to be among the first to try Upside's cultivated chicken.
The announcement comes after a series of milestones as Upside Foods approaches commercialization, including receiving the world's first "green light" for cultivated meat from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, a $400 million Series C placing the company's valuation at over $1 billion, and the expansion of its product portfolio to include ground cultivated meat products. In addition, Upside will continue its work with FDA and USDA to bring its next consumer products to market, including sausages, nuggets and dumplings.