Bills banning cultivated meat filed in Senate, House
Image via Colin Hackley.

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Lab-grown chicken, beef, and pork would be a no-go in Florida if these bills become law.

The 2024 Legislative Session will address some meaty topics, including one about what meat is — and isn’t — according to the Florida Senate and House.

On Tuesday, Sen. Clay Yarborough filed SB 586, which would, if enacted, squash efforts to bring lab-created beef and other synthesized animal flesh products to Florida groceries, restaurants, and plates.

Yarborough’s bill is the Senate companion of Rep. Tyler Sirois’ product in the House, which has been referred to three committees. The Agriculture, Conservation, and Resiliency subcommittee is the first stop, but the bill is not on a Committee agenda yet.

So-called “cultivated meat” was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration earlier this year and is available in select restaurants. Rather than traditional meat harvesting that involves mass slaughtering animals, meat cultivation in this context involves growing products from isolated cells.

Currently, those cells are sourced from animals, but expectations are that cell banks will eventually supplant living donors.

The Jacksonville Republican’s bill would deem it “unlawful for any person to manufacture, sell, hold or offer for sale, or distribute cultivated meat in this state,” with 2nd-degree misdemeanor penalties attached to violations of the law — which could earn fake meat perpetrators 60 days in lockdown or a $500 fine.

The bill also contemplates penalties for a “food establishment that manufactures, distributes, or sells cultivated meat,” leaving those fake-meat purveyors “subject to disciplinary action” that could include revocation of the right to operate.

The “license of any restaurant, store, or other business may be suspended as provided in the applicable licensing law upon the conviction of an owner or employee of that business for a violation of this section in connection with that business,” which would include an “immediate stop-sale order.”

A.G. Gancarski

A.G. Gancarski has written for FloridaPolitics.com since 2014. He is based in Northeast Florida. He can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter: @AGGancarski


11 comments

  • John Lentini

    November 28, 2023 at 1:28 pm

    There go the Republicans with their “small government” policies. How is this any of the State’s business?

    • Dr. Franklin Waters

      November 28, 2023 at 1:45 pm

      The Republican Party only exists to serve the interests of the wealthy. In this case, the beef industry.

      I’ve said it a million times. If you’re a Republican and NOT a member of the mult-millionaire elite, you’re a moron.

      • Julia

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  • PeterH

    November 28, 2023 at 1:38 pm

    Long ago Republicans were the Party of free enterprise and offered a business environment meant to expand competition and develop a culture of economic stewardship and freedom.

    Today’s Republicans are America’s worst enemy!
    Vote all Republicans out of office!

    • SteveHC

      November 28, 2023 at 1:48 pm

      – Correct. Florida’s Republican Party has apparently decided that their permanent residency in and control of the State Legislature is far more important to them than protecting and promoting American democracy. Absolutely disgusting. If Floridians value freedom – which they are OBVIOUSLY losing bit by bit – these fascists will need to be voted out of office as they’ve proven to us that they will not stop until Florida becomes a state ruled by a collective dictatorship.

  • SteveHC

    November 28, 2023 at 1:41 pm

    Idiots don’t seem to know that “cultivated” meat IS meat, just without requiring artificial insemination of cows, over-feeding their calves and then slaughtering them. Apparently these legislators’ claims to be “pro-life” are in fact just lying HYPOCRITES and nothing more, now saying any b.s. they can think of to protect the donations they receive from the beef industry.

  • Linwood Wright

    November 28, 2023 at 1:43 pm

    This is extremely short sighted and stinks of scientific ignorance and technophobia. Republicans will obviously all be fully on board.

  • Dennis Jay

    November 28, 2023 at 2:06 pm

    Cultured meats will help offset the devastation raising livestock has on the planet. It will also curtail the inhumanity of factory farming. Leave it to the GOP to want to continue such practices.

  • Michael K

    November 28, 2023 at 2:41 pm

    What is wrong with these people? What’s next? Burning vegans at the stake?

  • My Take

    November 28, 2023 at 2:46 pm

    When someòne perfects an extremely usrful cultured blood for medical use, some set of rightwing evilvangelicals will fight that as “ungodlý.” There will always be some kooks.

  • My Take

    November 28, 2023 at 8:07 pm

    I have nothing against cultured meat.
    But some of its panaceas are misunderstandings.
    It doesn’t replace livestock, it extends them.
    I believe it is fed on proteins from the hides, hooves, and bones of cattle and pigs.

Comments are closed.


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