Impossible Foods is debuting its first plant-based meatballs, Impossible Meatballs Made from Plants, to 3,000 Walmart locations this month. The new Impossible Meatballs are constructed from a combination of two Impossible products: Impossible Burger, a beef replacement, and Impossible Sausage, a pork alternative. The new plant-based meatballs, which come pre-seasoned with a tasty meatball spice, were developed to easily replace meat in dishes like Meatball Subs and Spaghetti and Meatballs.
The frozen, completely cooked, and pre-formed Impossible Meatballs ($6.48 a pack of approximately 14 meatballs) can be reheated in the microwave, stovetop, oven, or air fryer. The plant-based meatballs have 30% less sodium than the leading homestyle animal-derived meatball and, like all Impossible Foods products, are far less environmentally harmful than animal meat. Impossible’s plant-based alternatives require 75 percent less land, 85 percent less water, and 90 percent less greenhouse gas emissions than animal-derived foods, which account for up to 17 percent of global greenhouse gas emissions.
The vegan meatballs will be sold at Walmart in a new plant-based freezer department with the company’s other plant-based meats, including Impossible Burger, Impossible Chicken Nuggets, and Impossible Sausage.
Impossible creates plant-based meatballs
Impossible Foods has set a goal of replacing all animal-based foods with plant-based alternatives by 2035, and it’s well on its way. Impossible Meatballs is the third plant-based meat innovation released by Impossible Foods in the last four months.
Impossible Foods set out to recreate pork from plants after releasing its renowned Impossible Burger in stores in 2019. The Impossible Sausage Made from Plants was released in savory and spicy flavors in August. Impossible released its first plant-based chicken a few months later: Impossible Chicken Nuggets Made from Plants. Burger King became the first global fast-food major to trial vegan nuggets in the United States when the soy-based nuggets began rolling out to outlets in the fall and were added to the menu at select locations.
“We’re innovating faster than ever and developing our products with qualities that matter most to consumers, including everything from taste to convenience,” Ravi Thakkar, Impossible Foods’ Vice President of Product and Commercialization, said in a statement. “Impossible Meatballs are the latest example of that—giving people a simple, delicious, and sustainable alternative to a family classic.”
Quickly going beyond meat
The world’s population is rapidly increasing, and meat consumption is increasing as well. Because of the environmental damage caused by the animal agricultural sector, our world cannot support any more food animals. As a result, numerous companies, including Impossible Foods, are developing meat from plants, which is an environmentally superior solution to supply customer demand for meat.
Beyond Meat, Impossible Foods’ main competitor, produces similar vegan meat products and follows its own rapid-release schedule. Beyond Meatballs, the company’s own vegan meatballs, were launched last year and were expanded to 2,100 Walmart shops in May. For a limited period in 2019, Subway launched the Beyond Meatball Marinara at over 600 locations across the United States and Canada, which contained dairy cheese and specially designed plant-based meatballs.
Beyond Meat made a major push into vegan chicken this summer. Beyond Meat debuted Beyond Chicken Tenders in over 400 restaurants across North America in July, ahead of their release on store shelves. Beyond Meat also collaborated with A&W Canada and Panda Express to create vegan chicken nuggets and Beyond The Original Orange Chicken to meet the needs of each brand. Beyond Meat is currently working on a three-year relationship with McDonald’s to expand its McPlant platform, which might lead to a number of new menu items, including vegan chicken.
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