When it comes to food consumption in the United States, it seemed like there was a period of time where it didn’t matter what we put into our bodies. To add to that notion, as humans, we’ve neglected our environment and the creatures living within its beauty.
With more and more consumers becoming health-conscious, keen on where their food is coming from and continuing to seek food options that don’t harm animals nor our environment, companies like Beyond Meat and Impossible Foods provided us all with the Meatless meat options that changed how food is produced and what we eat. These companies have busted down the doors that were often clogged with ground or angus beef and provide people seeking plant-based substitutes, or Meatless Meat, as a replacement.
Wait, did we say plant-based meats?! Call the cops, meatless is on the horizon! These aren’t your typical old-school veggie burgers, that’s for sure!
Beyond Meat & Impossible Food Inc.
Let’s take a quick look at today’s two biggest competitors, the fast-food chains that have invested in them, companies jumping on the meatless bandwagon and if Meatless Meat is simply a facade or here to stay.
Founded by Ethan Brown in 2009, Beyond Meat is Los Angeles based and produces plant-based meat substitutes. The product officially became available to consumers in the United States in 2013.
Beyond Meat made waves in 2016 by releasing the first plant-based burger to be sold in the meat section of common groceries stores, including internationally.
They develop and manufacture a number of protein-based food products and offer vegan meat substitutes made from mixtures of pea protein isolates, mung bean protein, rice protein, coconut oil, canola oil and a range of vitamins and minerals. Potato starch, apple extract, and pomegranate powder are also found within these mixtures.
What Exactly Are Beyond Meat’s Meatless Burgers Made Of?
Let’s be real. Beyond Burger looks and tastes like beef and even bleeds like one! It’s made without GMOs, soy or gluten. Here’s are the ingredients:
“Water, Pea Protein Isolate, Expeller-Pressed Canola Oil, Refined Coconut Oil, Rice Protein, Natural Flavors, Cocoa Butter, Mung Bean Protein, Methylcellulose, Potato Starch, Apple Extract, Salt, Potassium Chloride, Vinegar, Lemon Juice Concentrate, Sunflower Lecithin, Pomegranate Fruit Powder, Beet Juice Extract (for color).”
Beyond Meat Distribution, Product and International Market
The company claims have 27,000 different points of distribution throughout the U.S. In July of 2019, Beyond Meat began rolling out products to 50 international markets, partnering with Tim Horton’s and A&W in Canada along with Tesco in the United Kingdom. Dunkin’ Donuts also jumped on board by selling breakfast sandwiches that use Meatless Sausage products in Manhattan, New York with plans for national distribution.
As of August 2019, KFC in Atlanta tested a version of Beyond Meats creations, Beyond Fried Chicken as a menu option. The product sold out almost immediately, within 5 hours. And, it sold more compared to one week of KFC’s popcorn chicken sales! It was described as a “Kentucky Fried Miracle”.
Impossible Foods Inc. / Impossible Burger
Impossible Foods Inc. is a company that produces and develops plant-based substitutes for meat products. Headquartered in Redwood City, CA, Impossible Foods was founded by Patrick O. Brown in 2011. The company aims to give consumers the nutritional benefits and taste of meat without the negative environmental and health impacts that come with the production associated with livestock products.
They research animal products at a molecular level then selects specific nutrients and proteins from plants. In return, the experience of eating a meat product is created.
The Impossible Burger is Impossible Foods’ signature product. It was released in 2016 and has since received both kosher and hala certifications. Earlier in 2019, Impossible Foods launched the Impossible Burger 2.0. It’s been stated as a tastier, juicer, more nutritious burger. It features 30% less sodium and 40% less saturated fat than their prior recipe. And, has just as much protein as 80/20 ground beef from cows. The newer product is gluten-free, replacing wheat with soy proteins.
What Is An Impossible Burger Made Of?
According to the Impossible Food Inc. website, Heme is what meat taste like meat. Thus, their scientists have made plant-based heme through fermentation of genetically engineered yeast. Here’s a list of Impossible Burger ingredients:
“Water, Soy Protein Concentrate, Coconut Oil, Sunflower Oil, Natural Flavors, 2% or less of: Potato Protein, Methylcellulose, Yeast Extract, Cultured Dextrose, Food Starch Modified, Soy Leghemoglobin, Salt, Soy Protein Isolate, Mixed Tocopherols (Vitamin E), Zinc Gluconate, Thiamine Hydrochloride (Vitamin B1), Sodium Ascorbate (Vitamin C), Niacin, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride (Vitamin B6), Riboflavin (Vitamin B2), Vitamin B12.”
Impossible Burger Has Investors and Big Believers
Burger staples throughout the United States including Umami, Hopdoddy, Bareburger and 33 Melt in Florida all jumped on bored in 2017. In April 2018, White Castle expanded to include the Impossible Burger at all 377 of their locations.
Shortly thereafter, the Impossible Burger made its way into well over 5,000 restaurants across all 50 states as well as in Hong Kong, China.
Recently, Burger King jumped into the meatless meat world by introducing its Impossible Whopper, which has been dubbed the Tesla of food this last summer. Meatless meat is now being flame grilled at the ol’ BK.
Furthermore, Impossible Food Inc. makes plant-based sausage that is currently being tested on pizzas sold by Little Caesars earlier this year.
Meatless Meat? We Want To Play, Too!
It isn’t a surprise that when new innovations arise in any industry, that corporations, competitors and investors will try to spin their own take on the product. In this case, the meatless meat train. Kellog’s just announced their meatless meat attempt, “IncogMeato,” while restaurants all throughout the country, like Burger King and Carl’s Jr., are jumping in on all the fun. Of course they are! The fast-food industry is doing all they can to keep themselves on market with those dropping off the meat-only menu wagon.
All in all, we don’t see this fade disappearing any time soon. Have you tried a Beyond Burger, an Impossible Burger or Meatless Product? What’s your favorite meatless option right now? Let us know!