»RELATED: Burger King brings a plant-based Whopper to Europe
Impossible gets heme — the protein that gives its burger meat-like flavor and texture — from soy leghemoglobin, which is found in the roots of soy plants. To make heme in high volume, Impossible inserts DNA from soy into yeast and ferments it.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration doesn’t approve foods before they go on the market and relies on companies to ensure their safety. But the FDA requires approval of additives such as artificial colors.
Because soy leghemoglobin also gives Impossible burgers their color, the agency required Impossible to get approval before selling uncooked burgers in grocery stores. The FDA approved Impossible’s petition in July. Impossible Foods wouldn’t say when it expects to sell the Impossible burger in Europe.
Burger King said it partners with different suppliers globally for many of its products, not just plant-based burgers.