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posted by Fnord666 on Friday August 04 2017, @06:48PM   Printer-friendly
from the eating-plants dept.

Impossible Foods, the six-year-old, Redwood City, Ca.-based company known for its "juicy" meatless burgers, quietly announced $75 million in funding late last week, led by Temasek, with participation from Open Philanthropy, as well as earlier investors Bill Gates, Khosla Ventures and Horizon Ventures.

The company says it isn't providing further financial details but the round brings Impossible's funding to nearly $300 million, including earlier rounds that have included GV, Viking Global Investors and UBS.

Impossible's burgers are made with  soy leghemoglobin, a protein that carries heme, an iron-containing molecule that occurs naturally in every animal and plant.

The company has said it wants to replace a number of animal products with goods engineered from plants, but for now, it seems squarely focused on getting more of its burgers into the world. Part of that strategy involved opening a factory in Oakland, Ca., in May, where it expects to be producing 1 million pounds of ground "plant meat" each month.

Thought the race was on to have us eat insects.


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  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Friday August 04 2017, @07:05PM (20 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday August 04 2017, @07:05PM (#548829)

    but until multiple, (relatively) unbiased double-blind studies conclusively show that the next great "meat substitute" is indistinguishable both taste-wise and nutritionally from the real thing...I'll keep eating real meat. And I suspect that will take quite a while.

    Meanwhile, these investors just threw away their money after falling for a clever PowerPoint presentation. Something something fool and his money...

  • (Score: 5, Informative) by Ken_g6 on Friday August 04 2017, @07:13PM

    by Ken_g6 (3706) on Friday August 04 2017, @07:13PM (#548834)

    I've been making spaghetti with Beyond Meat Beefy Crumble. Nobody who eats it can tell it's not meat. This is likely to be even better.

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Friday August 04 2017, @07:56PM (1 child)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday August 04 2017, @07:56PM (#548848)

    falling for a clever PowerPoint presentation.
    It couldn't have involved serving burgers made with the product they were evaluating. That would have made too much sense.

    Something something fool and his money...
    Yeah, because we all know how foolish Bill Gates is with his money . . .

    • (Score: 1, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Friday August 04 2017, @11:30PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Friday August 04 2017, @11:30PM (#548925)

      Yeah, because we all know how foolish Bill Gates is with his money
      I would not worry about where he invests his money. He has so much of it a loss of 75 million would be a 'woopse' not a life changing event. Even then he actually split the risk with a bunch of other investors.

      People with that sort of money do NOT invest like you or I. They invest in hundreds of things. If 9 fail and one gets a home run they come out ahead. They do it all the time. They are playing the odds. He is also playing the odds with trying to change the world with his money. He plays it that way because just the act of him investing creates price distortions. Warren Buffet has the same issue. BTW together those two have cornered the rail markets in Canada and most of the midwest. If it looks like this may take off look to his buddies to try to buy out the supply chain. He is one of the most ruthless businessman our world has ever created and makes Trump look like he is playing with tinker toys.

  • (Score: -1, Flamebait) by Anonymous Coward on Friday August 04 2017, @08:01PM (2 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday August 04 2017, @08:01PM (#548849)

    Obviously you're not in the target market.

    You're gonna get fucked up if you want to prevent me from giving these a try.

    What's next, are you going to decide that I can't have bacon either? Are bacon and non-beef burgers against your religion you fucking sand nigger? You want to get between me and a bison burger with bacon or black bean burger [morningstarfarms.com]? No kangaroo jerky for me because it's not beef? No hot wings because it's not beef? I'll cave your fucking head in, sand nigger.

    • (Score: 2) by Phoenix666 on Saturday August 05 2017, @12:55AM

      by Phoenix666 (552) on Saturday August 05 2017, @12:55AM (#548948) Journal

      Is there such a thing as kangaroo jerky? I'd buy it. Tried a kangaroo steak at a restaurant in Sydney and quite enjoyed it.

      --
      Washington DC delenda est.
    • (Score: 2) by takyon on Saturday August 05 2017, @05:24PM

      by takyon (881) <takyonNO@SPAMsoylentnews.org> on Saturday August 05 2017, @05:24PM (#549141) Journal

      You can have bacon, as long as it's not that turkey bacon crap.

      --
      [SIG] 10/28/2017: Soylent Upgrade v14 [soylentnews.org]
  • (Score: 3, Interesting) by richtopia on Friday August 04 2017, @08:20PM (2 children)

    by richtopia (3160) on Friday August 04 2017, @08:20PM (#548858) Homepage Journal

    Does the meat substitute need to taste equivalent to beef? Don't get me wrong, animal products are delicious, and they are the competition for vegetarian products. But I would be thrilled if a whole new flavour profile arises from a vegetarian selection that I prefer over meat alternatives.

    I'm curious about price. I favor vegetarian options at restaurants: I know a steak is delicious but to really doll up a plant sandwich is a culinary challenge. However day to day it is tough to find appealing choices that are cheaper than the competing meat product and easy to make. Typically the meat replacements like in the article are actually more expensive than hamburger, so justification for the vegetarian purchase stems from your particular morals.

    • (Score: 2) by krishnoid on Friday August 04 2017, @09:23PM

      by krishnoid (1156) on Friday August 04 2017, @09:23PM (#548868)

      I think some of the marketing for Beyond Burger is directed towards carnivores who want to substitute more plant protein for the meat protein in their current diet.

    • (Score: 1, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday August 05 2017, @03:22AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Saturday August 05 2017, @03:22AM (#548983)

      The main point of meat substitutes is that they resemble meat. In the US, vegetarians and vegans make up a fraction of a percent of the total population. In other countries where vegetarianism and veganism are more common, they don't use meat substitutes because it's not something they're interested in. Plus, the substitutes are usually expensive.

  • (Score: 3, Insightful) by wonkey_monkey on Friday August 04 2017, @08:50PM (1 child)

    by wonkey_monkey (279) on Friday August 04 2017, @08:50PM (#548862) Homepage

    indistinguishable both taste-wise and nutritionally from the real thing...

    What if it tastes better?

    --
    systemd is Roko's Basilisk
    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Friday August 04 2017, @11:33PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Friday August 04 2017, @11:33PM (#548928)

      For many burgers that would not be terribly hard. Most restaurant burgers are made with poor grade meat in the first place. Then cooked badly. Most of the time it comes down to spices and cooking method. So it is possible for it to be 'better'. One place I ate at as a child had 'Grade D meat fit for human consumption' written on the sides of the boxes...

  • (Score: 2) by takyon on Friday August 04 2017, @09:27PM (7 children)

    by takyon (881) <takyonNO@SPAMsoylentnews.org> on Friday August 04 2017, @09:27PM (#548871) Journal

    Look up some Impossible Burger reviews on YouTube. From what I can see they have created something that can possibly fool a blind taste tester. YMMV, but it seems to have done a great job at imitating meat after lots of "the boy who cried meat" attempts like Boca Burger or whatever that totally did not taste like meat. The heme "blood" seems to be key.

    Meanwhile, these investors just threw away their money after falling for a clever PowerPoint presentation.

    AFAIK it is sold to a handful of restaurants:

    https://www.impossiblefoods.com/findus/ [impossiblefoods.com]
    https://www.umamiburger.com/the-impossible-burger/ [umamiburger.com]

    Point being that it is at least not made of vapor.

    --
    [SIG] 10/28/2017: Soylent Upgrade v14 [soylentnews.org]
    • (Score: 1, Disagree) by captain normal on Friday August 04 2017, @09:53PM (3 children)

      by captain normal (2205) on Friday August 04 2017, @09:53PM (#548881)

      Yum...soy protein. Do you want the Kool-Aid with that?

      --
      When life isn't going right, go left.
    • (Score: 2) by Phoenix666 on Saturday August 05 2017, @12:57AM (2 children)

      by Phoenix666 (552) on Saturday August 05 2017, @12:57AM (#548949) Journal

      I'd eat Boca Burgers all the time, because they're tasty and you don't wind up feeling greasy the way you do after a regular hamburger.

      They are, however, expensive.

      --
      Washington DC delenda est.
  • (Score: 2) by linkdude64 on Saturday August 05 2017, @03:35PM

    by linkdude64 (5482) on Saturday August 05 2017, @03:35PM (#549125)

    I'm not concerned whether or not it has all of the same nutrients as meat does, I'm concerned whether or not it needs to go through such extreme processing that it fails to offset the energy and resources meat production requires and leaves a bunch of "Extra" completely unknown stuff in.

    Some synthetic edible meat-like food products (i.e. "Soy" chicken nuggets, etc." have paragraphs-long ingredients lists full of chemicals that sound like they belong in your computer's PCB vs. Trader Joe's ground Garbanzo Bean/Potato/Carrot/Pea patties (which are great). What is wrong with this country where it's almost like we can't be seen eating vegetables? Can somebody stand up for spinach and carrots please? They aren't very tall on their own, and they don't require 300 million dollars to R&D their production.

    I understand that substitutes intend to appeal to folks who would otherwise not be seen eating "rabbit food" but unless the IMAGE of eating vegetables is fixed first, they will still order the "Real deal" just "because."