Impossible foods, famous for creating an incredibly beef-like fake meat burger, has now moved on to their next fake meat accomplishment: pork.
The startup based in Silicon Valley unveiled its new product, Impossible Pork, at CES 2020 in Las Vegas. The substitute meat nearly perfectly mimics ground pork meat from pigs.
At the same time, they also unveiled the Impossible Sausage, a product that will launch in a few months with Burger King and the Impossible Croissan'wich.
What is Impossible Pork?
Impossible Pork is gluten-free, as well as kosher and halal certified. It looks just like pork, having a light pink color when it is uncooked and a juicy brownish texture after cooked.
The makeup of the pork is actually fairly similar to the makeup of the Impossible Burger, which has been around since 2016. The main protein in the pork substitute is soy, fattened up by sunflower and coconut oil. The Impossible Pork meat also has added sugars, vitamins, and amino acids. Notably, like the Impossible Burger, it has heme. Heme is a compound that is found in every living organism that produces meat-like flavors and smells. In the case of Impossible Food's products, the heme is synthesized.
The Impossible Pork has a lower heme content compared to the burger, meant to mimic the way that the real meats are distinguished too. In large part, this change in heme concentration makes the major differences between the two products.
Impossible Pork has about two thirds the number of calories of an equivalent serving of real pork, less fat, and no cholesterol. However, Impossible Foods has had its products come under fire for being heavily processed. Impossible Pork contains an astounding 420 mg of sodium. An equivalent serving of pork only has 80 mg.
Reports from CES 2020 from meat-eaters, vegetarians, and vegans alike all state that the meat replacement tastes astoundingly like the real thing. Part of what makes Impossible Food's products so believable is their texture. The company has mastered the art of replicating meat texture through artificial products.
The Impossible Sausage and Burger King
The Impossible Sausage wasn't announced at CES 2020, but it won't debut officially until Late January. 139 Burker King restaurants in Georgia, Michigan, New Mexico, Illinois, and Alabama will serve the Impossible sausage on their Croissan'wich.
Basically, it's a sausage breakfast sandwich.
The National Pork Producers Council has come out in opposition to Impossible Pork and Impossible Sausage, claiming that it is a violation of the national food safety naming convention. Unlike the Impossible Burger, which doesn't inherently say it's beef, Impossible Pork defines the meat by name. The NPPC claims that placing an adjective in front of Pork only refines what Pork means, but it would still have to be Pork.
Impossible Foods wants to create sustainable replacements for every meet product. Since the company is creating plant-based meat substitutes, they also want to make sure that the plant supply chain is sustainable as well.
Right now, Impossible Products cost more than their meat-based counterparts, but the company claims that as they scale, they expect to be able to beat out meat on a cost per basis. This seems to be a valid argument considering the company is still a small startup and hasn't reached economies of scale yet.