Can a Burger Save the World?
Although beef consumption has been on the decline in the United States for decades, there remains no meal more symbolically American—to the point of cliché—than a burger. The smell of ground beef sizzling on a grill may be pure Americana, but many environmentalists would argue that it’s pure waste too. After all, a quarter-pound hamburger requires nearly seven pounds of grain and forage and close to 53 gallons of water. According to the U.N.’s Food and Agriculture Organization, cattle are responsible for 65 percent of the total carbon emissions generated by livestock the world over—a major contributor to human-related carbon pollution.
What if a burger could provide the same look, smell, sizzle, and most important of all, flavor as an all-beef patty while only relying on plant-based ingredients? Would you be willing to switch? That’s the bet that Impossible Foods, the Redwood City, California–based vegan food-tech start-up is making with products like the Impossible Burger, which promises all the culinary delights of its meat counterpart with a fraction of the environmental damage and waste.