A Japanese startup is giving students meat-growing machines the size of microwaves. The Tokyo lab-grown meat company Integriculture has founded a non-profit project called the Shojinmeat Project which gives students the means to play around with cell cultivation. According to founder and chemist Yuki Hanyu, the project seeks to take something academic, hand it over to the public, then apply what user lessons to the commercial product, all the while extending the market for lab-grown meats.
Genetic modification and lab-grown meat are polarizing topics in the media and amongst the public. By handing over the means for growing meat to students, The Shojinmeat Project is combining UX market research with engagement to develop the market for a sensitive product. Could this strategy be used in other realms open to technological innovation but rife with controversy or taboo?
What unforeseen consequences could manifest from encouraging and scaling civilian bioengineering?