Bond Pets, a Colorado-based pet food company, is currently researching the development of cell-cultured meat, with the goal of producing healthier, more environmentally friendly food for pets. Inspired by companies that are creating similar “clean meat” for humans, Bond Pets hopes to produce sustainable pet food which avoids slaughtering animals and decreases environmental footprint. The environmental impact of meat production is enormous: livestock farming produces 18 to 50 percent of all manmade greenhouse gas emissions. If everyone in the U.S. ate vegan for just one day a week for a year, it would be equivalent to taking 7.6 million cars off the road.

So what exactly is “cell-cultured” or “clean meat?” Over the past few years, scientists have learned to use self-renewing cells to grow muscle tissue outside of living animals, so that protein can be grown inside of a lab rather than taken from live animals. Food tech companies such as Bond Pets believe that the creation of “clean meat” will increase transparency in the ingredients of pet food, and will address the environmental, health-safety, and humane-animal-treatment problems involved in meat production. While Bond Pets cell-cultured pet food is still in its early stages, Hampton Creek, a company developing cell-cultured meat products for humans, has said it has plans to introduce its first product to market this year. Cell-cultured pet foods could be on the market in a couple of years. Stay tuned!