Impossible Foods makes UK debut - but its burger stays Stateside

By BigHospitality

- Last updated on GMT

Impossible Foods makes UK debut - but its burger stays Stateside

Related tags: Impossible Foods, Plant-based, MEATliquor, Patty & Bun, Le Bab, Chicken Shop

The Californian company behind the headline-grabbing plant-based Impossible Burger is bringing its products to UK restaurants for the first time.

In a European first, from today (19 May) Impossible Food’s meat-free chicken nuggets and sausage patties will be available at restaurants including MEATliquor, Halo Burger, Chicken Cottage, Le Bab, and Patty & Bun.

They will also be available at Greene King’s Hungry Horse pubs brand at is 250 locations around the country.  

“At Hungry Horse, we’re big on getting together, and our customers come to us for the generous and unique food creations in a ‘home away from home’ environment,” says Robert Calderbank, business unit director for Hungry Horse.

“We’re so excited to bring the Impossible ‘Chicken’ Nuggets to our pubs and really believe these will deliver on that promise, tantalising the taste buds of our customers across the country, we can’t wait.”

“From the beginning our goal at Le Bab was to offer a new kind of kebab, fusing global influences with amazing ingredients, always with a mind to sustainability,” says Stephen Tozer, co-founder of Le Bab, Maison Bab and Kebab Queen.

“Impossible’s products are extraordinary. I first tried Impossible years ago and it blew my mind. I’ve wanted to collaborate with them ever since, so this is a bit of a dream come true! I’m absolutely certain that their plant-based meats are going to fundamentally change the way the world eats.”

Impossible Foods, whose backers include Bill Gates, Jay Z and Serena Williams, launched its ‘bleeding’ plant-based burger in the US to much hype in 2016 and has since gone on to launch meat-free chicken, sausage and pork alternatives.

However, the brand’s burger is not yet available in the UK because of a key ingredient, soy leghemoglobin, which is classified GRAS (Generally Recognized as Safe) in the US but which does not yet have regulatory approval in the UK or the EU. The ingredient imparts a meaty flavour and colour to the brand’s beef and pork products.

The sausage and chicken products available in the UK do not contain this signature ‘heme’ ingredient, with their recipes having been reformulated for the UK market.

It is understood that Impossible Food has filed applications with the Food Standards Agency and the European Food Safety Authority, and is waiting ona decision as to whether its burger can eventually be made available over here.

Related topics: Products

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