A federal appeals court upheld the FDA’s approval of the key ingredient in Impossible Foods’ fake meat products, GMO soy leghemoglobin. The decision allows Impossible Burgers to hit grocery stores and schools and ensures the potentially hazardous ingredient can remain on the market.
- Impossible Foods’ meatless burgers contain substantial amounts of GE soy leghemoglobin, which humans have never before consumed.
- The FDA approved soy leghemoglobin in 2019, prompting the Center for Food Safety (CFS) to file a lawsuit challenging the approval, which they called “unusually rapid” and risky for public health.
- CFS points out that soy leghemoglobin is produced using synthetic biology, or “genetic engineering on steroids,” which constructs new biological parts, devices and systems that do not exist in the natural world.
- Impossible Foods’ rat study was not large or long enough to meet minimum FDA requirements, yet still showed some concerning health risks, including disruption of reproductive cycles.
- Many tech big-wigs are invested in fake meat products, which they plan to peddle to feed the masses, but these highly processed junk foods are a disaster for both human health and the environment.
Impossible Foods touts its fake meat burgers as health food that’s also good for the environment — both myths. Among its highly-processed ingredients is soy leghemoglobin, or heme. This, the company says, is what makes meat taste like meat, and, in plants, leghemoglobin is the protein that carries heme, an iron-containing molecule.
Originally, Impossible Foods harvested leghemoglobin from the roots of soy plants, but deemed that method unsustainable. Instead, they turned to genetic engineering, which they use to insert the DNA from soy plants into yeast, creating genetically engineered (GE) yeast with the gene for soy leghemoglobin.