‘Exotic’ plant-based woolly mammoth burgers could be ‘meatier’ than a Big Mac

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Kiss goodbye to Big Macs and say hello to Big Mammoths—as one company is working on lab-grown woolly mammoth burgers.

Belgian startup Paleo is developing plant-based meat proteins to help people transition to healthier, more sustainable food.

As well as working on popular gob fodder such as beef, chicken, pork, tuna and lamb, the company also wants to get woolly mammoth meat back on the menu.

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By analysing the DNA of woolly mammoths found buried in the ice, the company says it has been able to create a new kind of meat protein based on the long-dead animal.

It means you could soon be able to get your jaw around the kind of meat that humans haven't eaten in 12,000 years.

The company's CEO Hermes Sanctorum told Food Dive: "I know that it's a bit more exotic. I can imagine that not everyone is really into trying something like that. But at least we can show also that we are able to produce something less obvious."

He added: "You can describe it as more meaty."

The company is able to do so by creating 'heme' proteins through fermentation. This is the substance that gives meat a meaty taste, and lets people eat meat without any animals being killed.

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Paleo's plan to make burgers out of woolly mammoths comes just as a leading US biosciences company is working on resurrecting the furry elephants themselves.

Colossal Biosciences wants to bring mammoths back to life using the gene-editing tool CRISPR and a number of Asian elephants.

Scientists believe that reintroducing woolly mammoths to the Arctic and letting them roam free could help prevent the permafrost melting due to climate change, which would release enough methane and carbon to doom the entire planet.


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