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This Leather Jacket? It Came From a Petri Dish

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To visit the vanguard of fashion, one must first manage to find Nutley, New Jersey, on a map; then, a short drive from Manhattan later, after a right turn onto Ideation Way and up the winding drive, one arrives at a hulking, 72,900-square-foot brutalist structure. Welcome to the production headquarters of Modern Meadow, a start-up that has been quietly—and under top secrecy—perfecting a proprietary bioengineered leather that could revolutionize the textile industry. Late last year, after I managed to wrangle a heavily supervised visit to the lab, I held in my hands the result of their efforts. Delivered to me...

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