Use real chicken in KFC

Chicken nuggets from the 3D printer: KFC experiments with printed laboratory meat

What may sound like a limited appetizing joke to many is now actually becoming a reality: The American fast food chain KFC wants to have its chicken nuggets produced with a 3D printer in the future. The company announces this as part of a research initiative called "Restaurant of the Future".


Together with the Russian company 3D Bioprinting Solutions, chicken meat is to be imitated. A mixture of chicken cells and vegetable materials is used as the starting material, the print is supposed to imitate both the taste and texture of real chicken meat. Then there are the usual spices and breading to ensure the "typical KFC taste".

The fast food provider sees a promising alternative in 3D printing: After all, such 3D printed chicken nuggets could be produced much more ecologically than is the case with real chicken farming. Raising meat in the laboratory could therefore also help to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.


Currently, such 3D bioprinting technologies are mainly used in the medical field, for example to create organs for transplants. So far, however, with rather limited success, and it is a very slow process.

At 3D Bioprinting Solutions we are still fully convinced of the great future of this area. The company expects the technologies used to develop rapidly - and food production can also play an important role in this. The cooperation with KFC is an important step in this direction.


Meat produced in the laboratory has seen a real boom in recent years. However, these are usually purely plant-based replicas - such as the products from "Beyond Meat" and "Impossible Foods". The key difference is that KFC wants to use real chicken cells here - which of course means that the result is no longer vegetarian.

With all this, it remains to be seen when such 3D printed chicken nuggets will really be available for the masses to buy. The announcement only mentions that the final tests will take place in Moscow in the fall - how things will then proceed is left open. (red, July 20, 2020)