Making pork from plants
A plant-based pork substitute has been launched in Las Vegas by one of the leading “alternative meat” producers. Impossible Foods, the firm behind the Impossible Burger, says it hopes to appeal to a global audience with its latest vegetarian-friendly meal, which it unveiled at the CES tech show.
Pork is currently the most widely consumed meat in the world.
The company hopes the product will help it break into China. But one expert said it might find that a challenge.
The first product to feature the foodstuff – the Impossible Sausage – will be available next week at 67 Burger King restaurants in the US, in a sandwich-based dish called the Croissan’wich.
Rival firm Beyond Meat has offered a lab-produced sausage product since 2018, but California-based Impossible Foods is also offering a ground pork substitute that it says can be used in a wide range of traditional recipes.
The new products are designed to comply with kosher and halal rules followed by some observers of the Jewish and Islamic faiths.
The firm’s sausage and plant-based pork products, like its ground beef substitute, are made using heme – a molecule derived from plants that contains iron and that resembles blood.
Heme is found in real meat but can be produced without farming animals. The new products also contain no gluten, animal hormones or antibiotics.
“Now we’re accelerating the expansion of our product portfolio to more of the world’s favourite foods,” said Patrick Brown, Impossible Foods’ founder and chief executive.
“We won’t stop until we eliminate the need for animals in the food chain and make the global food system sustainable.”