Bloomberg reports that Impossible Foods has won a court ruling to continue using a key additive in its meat substitute, over the objections of a food safety group.
The federal appeals court in San Francisco on Monday upheld a decision by the US Food and Drug Administration to approve the use of soy leghemoglobin as a colour additive in Impossible’s imitation beef patties. The 2019 decision removed a hurdle for Impossible in extending its burger sales from restaurants to grocery stores.
Soy leghemoglobin, or heme, is a red, genetically modified ingredient that Impossible touted as the key to its burgers’ flavor. But its use has brought regulatory problems in the US and barred the products from major foreign markets, including China and the European Union. Beyond Meat Inc., Impossible’s main competitor, often points to its GMO-free ingredient list in its marketing.
The market for plant-based meat is forecast to grow to $450 billion, making up a quarter of the $1.8 trillion meat market, by 2040, according to consulting firm Kearney, which sees animal protein peaking in 2025.