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Plant-Based Cheeseburger, Anyone? Impossible Foods Raises $108 Million

8 October 2015, 8:02 am EDT By Horia Ungureanu Tech Times
Impossible Foods gathered strong support from investors. The company said that the world’s first plant based cheeseburger was created with the well-being of the humans and the environment in mind.  ( Impossible Foods )

Impossible Foods convinced its investors that it can create provisions that taste like meat and dairy just from plants. The Californian-based company just received $108 million from investors.

The investment assembly was led by UBS and featured other important global names such as Viking Global Investors. Earlier backers of the project maintained their enthusiasm and were also present, namely Khosla Ventures and Bill Gates. Hong Kong Business tycoon Li Ka-shing appointed Horizons Ventures to invest in his name.

Horizon Ventures also invested in food company Modern Meadow. Unlike the vegetarian-oriented enterprise, Modern Meadow makes use of bioengineering to raise animal cells in the lab so it can produce leathers and steak chips.

"Both companies are trying to bring great food to the world's table through technology that is much more environmentally friendly and effective in terms of 'real cost' to the world," Solina Chau from Horizons Ventures said.

Impossible Foods is the brainchild of Patrick Brown who, before launching into food entrepreneurship, was a biochemistry professor at Stanford. He co-founded Kite Hill, a food company localized in a Hayward, California. The firm specializes in nut milk products, who it claims are healthy and environmental-friendly, in opposition with the dairy products they replace.

The other partners in the firm were Tal Ronnen, the famous vegan chef and Monte Casino, the producer of dairy products. Its portfolio already included almond milk cheeses, ricotta, ravioli, and cream-cheese-like cheeses, so the expertise came from multiple directions.

Brown made a purpose out of delivering cholesterol, hormones and antibiotics-free nourishments with Kate Hill and continues to do so with Impossible Foods. His latest culinary attraction, Brown announced, is the plant-based cheeseburger.

The latest forecasts measuring the population growth show that by 2050, the world population will reach 9.6 billion. For reference, in the second year of World War II, 1940, there were only about 2.3 billion people in the world.

Accelerated demographic increase is one reason Brown and the investors are focusing on creating sustainable plant based foods for the future.

Rumors say that Impossible Foods discussed the possibility of a takeover with Google. Sources claim that the deal never came to be due to Google's refusal to pay a hefty price for the plant based food company. Official information is scarce, but numbers reaching $300 million reached public ears.

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