Impossible Foods announced that Air New Zealand is the first airline to offer the Impossible Burger. The item is available to business class passengers ordering from the Business Premier menu on flights from Los Angeles to New Zealand. The airline will serve the Impossible Burger on flights NZ1 and NZ5 from Los Angeles to Auckland through late October.
“We’re incredibly excited about this partnership and the opportunity to offer our Business Premier customers traveling from Los Angeles to Auckland a delicious plant-based option that tastes just like the real deal,” said Niki Chave, Inflight Customer Experience Manager for Air New Zealand. “We’re confident that vegetarians, flexitarians and dedicated meat lovers alike will enjoy the delicious taste of the Impossible Burger; and for those who want to stay with the tried and true it will sit alongside our regular selection of menu items prepared by our talented culinary team and consultant chefs.”
The Impossible Burger is made entirely of plant-based ingredients such as pressure-cooked wheat proteins that provide nutritional and textural attributes and potato proteins.
But the burger’s crucial ingredient is leghemoglobin, or “heme.” Heme gives the Impossible Burger its bleeding attribute and creates the flavor in raw and cooked product. Heme reacts with the proteins, amino acids, sugars and vitamins in the blend.
Micro-amounts of carbohydrates, including Konjac gum (a Japanese ingredient) and xanthan gum, allow the “raw” product to be formed into different products such as meatballs, meatloaf and burger patties.
Impossible Foods’ quickly has become a major player in the foodservice sector thanks to the company’s signature product. The burger is served in 2,500 foodservice outlets, including White Castle, Houlihan’s, Wahlburgers, Oakland Alameda Coliseum (the home of Major League Baseball’s Oakland Athletics) and Bareburger. The company also manufactures the burgers for non-commercial foodservice outlets such as universities, company dining halls and other institutions.
To accommodate demand, the Oakland, California-based company added a second shift at its 68,000-sq.-ft. facility which has the capacity to produce 1 million lbs. of product per month.
“We launched with high-credibility, innovative chefs known for their delicious burgers — so it’s no coincidence our first airline partner has been named Airline of the Year for five straight years,” said Impossible Foods CEO and founder Patrick Brown, Ph.D. “Air New Zealand can help us take the Impossible Burger to even greater heights, quite literally.”