News

Impossible Foods' CEO Speaks Out About Animal Testing

The company's CEO Pat Brown: "I personally abhor the exploitation of animals."

Last week, food technology company Impossible Foods revealed that it tested its key ingredient—soy leghemoglobin (aka, “heme”)—on rats. In a statement entitled “The Agonizing Dilemma of Animal Testing” dated August 2017, Impossible Foods’ CEO Patick O. Brown explained his stance on the matter, revealing a systemic issue with the process of receiving approval from the Food and Drug Administration for the safety of uncommon ingredients.
 
“The core of Impossible Foods’ mission is to eliminate exploitation of animals in the food system and to reduce the enormous destructive impact of the animal farming and fishing industries on the environment, including wildlife and the ecosystems they depend on,” Brown said. The CEO posits that while traditional vegan products are embraced by those willing to follow a plant-based diet, for the millions of meat-eaters around the world, innovative foods—such as the Impossible Burger—are what will make the greatest impact in reducing animal suffering. Thus, Brown (who has been vegan for 14 years) and his team worked to isolate a plant substance—soy leghemoglobin—that evokes the taste of meat.
 
Brown explained that in testing, his team sought to do the least harm—choosing to use a minimal amount of rats, housed in the best conditions possible, at a laboratory known for humane practices—and hopes that these types of tests will never have to be conducted again. “It is industry standard to perform rat-feeding studies to demonstrate that a food ingredient is not toxic and is safe,” Brown said. “I personally abhor the exploitation of animals not only in the food system but in testing and research,” Brown explained before revealing that he has worked tirelessly to avoid testing on animals during his 30-year career in biomedical research.
 
“Nobody is more committed or working harder to eliminate exploitation of animals than Impossible Foods," Brown said. "Avoiding the dilemma was not an option. We hope we will never have to face such a choice again, but choosing the option that advances the greater good is more important to us than ideological purity.”
 

More News

Brothers Row Across Atlantic to Dispel Vegan Myths

Jude Massey and Greg Bailey are currently in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, rowing for hours and eating only plant-based meals to show that animal products are not necessary for extreme athletic abilities.
Read More »

Stand-Up Comic Adam Sank Goes Vegan for the Animals

The funnyman credits documentary What the Health for pushing him from vegetarianism to veganism.
Read More »

Cargill Invests in Plant-Based Protein

The animal agriculture feed supplier joins PURIS—the largest pea-protein producer in North America—in its mission to create sustainable plant-based foods.
Read More »

Muay Thai Fighter to Open Vegan Bakery in NYC

Vegan chef Watt Sriboonruang's Rawsome Bakery will land on Orchard Street in Manhattan—further veganizing a street occupied by vegan apparel company MooShoes and vegan store Orchard Grocer.
Read More »

Vegan Brand Breaks Indiegogo's Crowdfunding Record

Vegan meal shake startup Bear Brands raised more than $65,000 from 250 backers in the first day of its crowdfunding campaign.
Read More »

This Week on VegNews TV: The secret to these delightful sweet treats is white beans! Aylin Erman shows you how to make these simple blondies.

More Videos »