We love it when students focus on Impossible Foods for school projects! Unfortunately, we’re not able to respond to each student project request individually, but we’re happy to point you in the right direction.
Below are answers to some of the most common questions we receive from students, along with links to resources and news articles where you can take a deeper dive.
How did Impossible Foods come to be?
In 2009, Stanford University professor, Dr. Patrick O. Brown, decided to alter the course of his career to address the urgent problem of climate change. In particular, he wanted to make the global food system sustainable by making meat directly from plants. In 2011, Pat founded Impossible Foods and brought together a team of top scientists to analyze meat at the molecular level and determine precisely why meat smells, handles, cooks, and tastes the way it does. We debuted our first product, Impossible™ Beef Made From Plants (then known as Impossible™ Burger), in 2016. Learn more about our mission in Pat’s words here, or listen to him tell the story here.
How do you measure your impact?
We publish an annual Impact Report that details our progress towards our mission. Check out our 2022 Impact Report here (and you can access reports from 2020, 2019, 2018, and 2017, too). You can learn even more about our mission and how eating Impossible™ products can reduce your environmental footprint here.
How are your products made?
Our products are made by mixing carefully selected ingredients, derived from plants or by fermentation, to create something unique and delicious. One of our key ingredients is heme, the molecule that makes meat taste like meat. We make ours by taking the DNA from soy plants and inserting it into a genetically engineered yeast, then fermenting the yeast to produce heme. Learn more about heme from our scientists in this video.
What’s a challenge you’ve encountered, and how have you overcome it?
Every day we face challenges head-on and keep blasting ahead! One was figuring out how to scale fast enough to meet skyrocketing demand for our product. When we experienced a product shortage, we accelerated hiring, optimized production for efficiency, and even took volunteers from our corporate office to go work in our factory. We also launched a new manufacturing partnership to help us meet demand as it continues to grow for many years to come.
How did you get to where you are today?
One step at a time! We started in 2016 with just one product (the Impossible™ Burger) in one restaurant, building our reputation with chefs and consumers. Fast forward to today, and our beef, chicken, and pork products made from plants are available in countries around the world.
What do you look for in employees?
If you’re specifically interested in learning more about our scientists, get to know a few of them here.
What does the future hold for Impossible Foods?
We’re working hard to continue innovating on our products and to expand to more locations around the world.