Director Liz Marshall (The Ghosts in Our Machine) will premiere her latest documentary Meat the Future on Thursday (May 7) as part of Hot Docs at Home on CBC.
The film centers on the U.S. movement toward cell-based meat — also known as “clean meat” and “cultivated meat” – a scientific process of growing animal cells to harvest poultry, beef, pork, fish and seafood.
Filmed between 2016 and 2019, Meat the Future goes behind the scenes with the movements’ pioneers — namely activists, scientists, researchers, marketers and policy experts — who believe the process can help prevent zoonotic foodborne diseases and reduce the greenhouse gases that result from animal agriculture, among other benefits.
The character-driven film focuses largely on one individual, Uma Valeti, a Mayo Clinic-trained cardiologist and co-founder and CEO of startup Memphis Meats. Valeti and his team have attracted investment from the likes of billionaire influencers Bill Gates and Richard Branson and from food giant corporations Tyson and Cargill.
Meat the Future travels to Washington, D.C., where ranchers, farmers, and conventional meat lobby groups fight to protect their recognized brand of meat and beef “harvested in the traditional manner,” while representatives from the cellular agricultural community work to define a clear regulatory framework.
Chefs will also “perform their magic” on the cell-based meat.
Meat the Future was produced in association with documentary Channel, the Canadian Media Fund and the Redford Center Grant, with funding from the New York Community Trust. It was produced in participation with the Rogers Cable Network Fund.
The film premieres at May 7 at 8 p.m. ET/PT on CBC and CBC Gem, and at 9 p.m. ET/PT on documentary Channel.
Watch an exclusive clip of Meat the Future below: