One of the best plant-based burgers is coming to the rescue, and not a day too soon: Impossible Foods, maker of the successful Impossible Burger, is rolling out its products at more than 1,700 grocery stores owned by The Kroger Co., the biggest grocery chain in the U.S.
In a press conference on May 5, the company said the rollout includes all Kroger stores in Texas, and will begin this week. President Dennis Woodside said that getting Impossible Burger into Kroger stores is a benchmark for the company because Kroger is such a big presence.
Kroger senior VP Joe Grieshaber said in a statement that plant-based foods are one of the chain's fastest-growing categories. "We're excited to continue growing our selection, especially as more customers than ever are purchasing meat products made from plants," Grieshaber said.
The Impossible Burger offering at Kroger will come in 12-ounce packages, fresh or frozen, in the meat aisle or the vegetarian section. In addition to grocery stores, it's also available online at Kroger.com for Kroger curbside pickup and delivery.
Beyond its amazing likeness to beef, the Impossible Burger has as much protein and iron as a comparable serving of ground beef from cows, with 0 mg cholesterol, 14 grams of total fat, 8g of saturated fat, and 240 calories. (A conventional 4-ounce 80/20 patty from cows has 80 mg cholesterol, 23 grams of total fat, 9g of saturated fat and 290 calories.)
Impossible Burger contains no animal hormones or antibiotics, and is kosher, halal, and gluten-free certified. It also has a lower environmental impact, using 96 percent less land, 87 percent less water, and causing 89 percent fewer greenhouse gas emissions compared to conventional beef.
The timing is fortuitous, coming just as grocery stores, including Kroger and Costco, are facing shortages of meat and limitations on supply, due to the effects of COVID-19 on the meat industry.
According to the Centers for Disease Control, more than 4,000 workers at 115 meatpacking plants have been infected with the coronavirus, with more than a thousand of those cases in Texas. The virus has caused a number of slaughterhouses to close, forcing millions of pigs and other animals to be euthanized.
A statement from Kroger says that, due to high demand, they're limiting the number of ground beef, fresh pork, and fresh chicken products to 2 each per customer. "There have been a number of meat processing facilities around the country that have experienced temporary closures," their statement says. "However, even without direct connection to those impacted plants, removing any amount of product from the market puts a strain on each aspect of the supply chain across companies hence our recent, and temporary purchase limitations on select meat products."
Whereas, you can buy all the Impossible you want.
In addition to grocery stores, the Impossible Burger is available at Burger King, Qdoba, White Castle, Red Robin, Cheesecake Factory, Hard Rock Cafe, and more.