Impossible Foods Serves Up Pork, Sausage Made from Plants

Impossible Foods Serves Up Pork, Sausage Made from Plants

“We won’t stop until we eliminate the need for animals in the food chain and make the global food system sustainable.”

Impossible Foods, which is known for its meatless burgers, is launching plant-based sausage at CES 2020. The food-tech startup said in a statement

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Impossible Foods, which is known for its meatless burgers, is launching plant-based sausage at CES 2020.

The food-tech startup said in a statement it is launching Impossible Sausage, which debuts in late January at 139 Burger King restaurants in a limited-time test of the Impossible Croissan’wich.

The plant-based pork is made with soy protein and is designed to look, taste and cook like real meat.

Impossible Sausage contains no gluten, no animal hormones and no antibiotics, the company claims.

It added that a raw, 2-ounce serving has 7 g protein, 1.69 mg iron, 0 mg cholesterol, 9 g total fat, 4 g saturated fat and 130 calories. A 2-ounce serving of conventional Jimmy Dean’s raw pork sausage made from pigs contains 7 g protein, 0.36 mg iron, 40 mg cholesterol, 21 g total fat, 7 g saturated fat and 220 calories, it said.

Impossible Pork and Impossible Sausage are the only new foods showcased at CES2020 and the first all-new products from Impossible Foods, Inc. Magazine’s company of the year and one of Time Magazine’s 50 Genius companies.

The leading food-tech startup launched its award-winning Impossible Burger in 2016 with America’s top chefs. Impossible Burger is now available in more than 17,000 restaurants in the United States, Singapore, Hong Kong and Macau.

Impossible burger

Impossible burger

“Impossible Foods cracked meat’s molecular code — starting with ground beef, which is intrinsic to the American market. Now we’re accelerating the expansion of our product portfolio to more of the world’s favorite foods,” said Impossible Foods’ CEO and Founder Dr. Patrick O. Brown.

“We won’t stop until we eliminate the need for animals in the food chain and make the global food system sustainable.”

Pork: World’s most ubiquitous meat

Raising animals for food makes up the vast majority of the land footprint of humanity. All the buildings, roads and paved surfaces in the world occupy less than 2% of Earth’s land surface, while more than 45% of the land surface of Earth is currently in use as land for grazing or growing feed crops for livestock.

Populations of mammals, birds, fish, reptiles, and amphibians have, on average, declined in size by 60 percent in just over 40 years. Animal agriculture is a primary driver of the accelerating collapse in diverse wildlife populations and ecosystems on land and in oceans, rivers and lakes.

While cows and chicken are America’s favorite protein sources, pigs are the most widely eaten animal in the world, accounting for about 38% of meat production worldwide.

According to the United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization, the world is home to about 1.44 billion pigs; with an average weight of about 112 kg, total farmed pig biomass totals 175 billion kg. That’s nearly twice as much as the total biomass of all wild terrestrial vertebrates.

In order to satisfy humanity’s voracious demand for pork — from Spanish jamón and Polish kielbasa to Brazilian feijoada and BBQ ribs — 47 pigs are killed on average every second of every day, based on FAO data.

More than half of the world’s pigs are eaten in China, where pork consumption has increased 140% since 1990, with dire consequences to the environment — including depletion of natural resources and increased greenhouse gas emissions.

Impossible Foods

Impossible Foods

Using pigs as a protein production technology comes with a high environmental cost — on both a global and local scale: Industrial pork production releases excessive amounts of nitrogen and phosphorus into the environment, and the high doses of copper and zinc fed to pigs to promote growth accumulate in the soil. Feces and waste often spread to surrounding neighborhoods, polluting air and water with toxic waste particles.

Pork poses threats to both individual and public health. Because antibiotics are prophylactically added into pig (and cow and chicken) feed to protect and fatten the animals, pork consumption promotes antibiotic resistance — which the United Nations says could cause 10 million deaths a year by 2050 and trigger a global recession. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, drug-resistant infections now kill 35,000 people in the United States each year and sicken 2.8 million.

Swine (and avian) flus are the most likely pandemic vectors because they pass easily to humans via feces in slaughterhouses. A University of Minnesota study discovered fecal matter in 69% of pork. A devastating epidemic of African swine fever has already wiped out roughly one-quarter of the world’s pigs and is expected to drive up worldwide prices of animal protein.

About 2.5 billion people reject pork and pork-derived products based on dietary and religious restrictions. Pork from animals is forbidden in interpretations of Hinduism, Judiasm, Islam and some Christian sects.

“Pork is delicious and ubiquitous — but problematic for billions of people and the planet at large,” said Dr. Laura Kliman, senior flavor scientist at Impossible Foods and one of the company’s researchers on Impossible Pork and Impossible Sausage. “By contrast, everyone will be able to enjoy Impossible Pork, without compromise to deliciousness, ethics or Earth.”

Big taste, small footprint

Based in Redwood City, Calif., Impossible Foods uses modern science and technology to create delicious food, restore natural ecosystems and feed a growing population sustainably. The company makes meat from plants — with a much smaller environmental footprint than meat from animals.

To satisfy the global demand for meat at a fraction of the environmental impact, Impossible Foods developed a far more sustainable, scalable and affordable way to make meat, without the catastrophic environmental impact of livestock.

Shortly after its founding in 2011, Impossible Foods’ scientists discovered that one molecule — “heme” — is primarily responsible for the explosion of flavors that result when meat is cooked. Impossible Foods’ scientists genetically engineer and ferment yeast to produce a heme protein naturally found in plants, called soy leghemoglobin.

The heme in Impossible products is identical to the essential heme humans have been consuming for hundreds of thousands of years in meat — and while Impossible products deliver all the craveable depth of animal meats, the plant-based innovations require far fewer resources because they’re made from plants.

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