Impossible Foods, the company behind the Impossible Burger, is using its food technology to create a new fish product. The project involves heme protein, the same used for the company’s existing ‘meat’ product, and it aims to introduce a meatless alternative to existing fish products on the market. Questions remain over whether consumers are interested in vegetarian fish alternatives, however.
The company’s project was recently detailed by the New York Times, which reports that Impossible’s team successfully created a plant-based broth flavored like anchovies. The company is working toward the development of a complete fish protein product, however, one that doesn’t actually contain fish.
Impossible Foods garnered vast public attention due to its development of a plant-based hamburger that ‘bleeds’ like real beef. The Impossible Burger has proven very popular among consumers, leading to its arrival in various restaurants and, most recently, the fast food joint Burger King.
Veggie burgers have existed in various forms for decades, but have traditionally been less than stellar — most plant-based burgers are made from beans, wheat, and other similar products, the result being something that doesn’t taste like and barely resembles an actual burger.
The launch of a realistic plant-burger came amid growing consumer demand for meat-free alternatives, something typically sought from a health, rather than environmental, standpoint.
For that reason, it remains unclear whether consumers will show the same interest in plant-based fish alternatives as they have with beef. Though red meat is associated with negative health outcomes, fish has been linked to many positive health effects, removing some of the incentive for consumers to choose plant-based options.