Impossible Foods touts eco-benefits of its GMO plant-based burger to win over skeptical consumers

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Image: Morels Cafe

Impossible Foods has claimed a spot on the menus of fast-food chains like Restaurant Brands International’s Burger King and White Castle, making it a major player in the growing alternative meat market. One thing separating it from the crowd: GMOs.

Unlike its biggest competitor Beyond Meat, which touts Non-GMO Project verification for all its plant-based proteins, Impossible Foods uses multiple genetically modified ingredients.

Since Impossible Foods first debuted in restaurants, advocacy groups including the Center for Food Safety, Non-GMO Project and Friends of the Earth all have raised concerns with the available research on its products’ ingredients.

A 2018 Pew Research Center poll found that 49% of consumers say foods with GMO ingredients are unhealthier than GMO-free foods — up from 39% in the center’s 2016 survey.

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Despite this, the Impossible Burger has seen nationwide success, focusing its marketing strategy on environmental benefits. Impossible Foods reports that its manufacturing process causes significantly less damage to the environment than beef production, requiring 87% less water, 96% less land and 80% less herbicide, as well as releasing 89% fewer greenhouse gases into the atmosphere.

The National Restaurant Association predicted in a November report that plant-based proteins will continue to surge in popularity …. partially due to increased consumer attention to climate change.

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