A sustainable food start-up that specialises in making plant-based burgers has attracted USD 75 million in investment.
Bill Gates is one of those backing Impossible Foods, which announced the closing of the investment led by Singaporean investment firm Temasek Holdings.
The company’s flagship product, the Impossible Burger, is made with plant-based ingredients, the most important is soy leghemoglobin, which contains heme – a molecule found in all animals and plants. Impossible Foods pioneered a method to produce it at scale without the need of animals.
“Our scientists spent so much time and effort studying a single molecule — heme — because heme is what makes meat taste like meat,” said Impossible Foods CEO and Founder, Dr Patrick O. Brown. “It turns out that finding a sustainable way to make massive amounts of heme from plants is a critical step in solving the world’s greatest environmental threat.”
The Impossible Burger needs 75% less water and creates 87% fewer greenhouse gases than traditional meat-based burgers. And the young company was recently granted a US patent for its tech used to make the leghemoglobin.
Ecovia Intelligence Comment
Impossible Foods is one of a growing number of start-ups developing ‘alternative protein’ foods. Rising meat and seafood consumption levels are having ecological repercussions. There are also health benefits of moving to plant-based proteins.
California appears to be a hotbed of investment in plant-based meat alternatives. Apart from Impossible Foods, it is also home to Hampton Creek and Sophie’s Kitchen. The latter company has developed a novel range of plant-based seafood products; it will be stating the challenges of developing and marketing such products at the Asia-Pacific edition of the Sustainable Foods Summit, hosted in Singapore on 28-30th November. More details are on the website
Related Insights: COP21 Highlights Need for Sustainable Proteins
Source: News Release / Ecovia Intelligence (06/08)