Vegan Burger Startup Debuts at High-End Restaurants

Bill Gates-backed vegan burger will be introduced to customers starting in July.

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Silicon Valley food startup Impossible Foods is gearing up to launch its much-buzzed-about Impossible Burger this month. The Wall Street Journal reported that the plant-based “future” burger will be first made available at Jardinière, an upscale San Francisco restaurant, with a roll-out at other restaurants later this summer in New York City. The exclusive, high-end launch is a deliberate and two-pronged approach, as the brand hopes to generate buzz, grow slowly, and stay in-demand while also avoiding attention from meat lobbyists. “My feeling is, right now, that we’re in the fortunate position where the beef industry is not inclined to feel threatened by anyone like us,” CEO and founder Patrick O. Brown said. “We’re not having a war of aggression on the meat industry—at least overtly.” Another goal for the company is to have grocers stock the burger alongside animal-based meat, where it can attract attention from the wider, omnivorous customer base, instead of in the freezer section with veggie burgers (a strategy first trialed by Beyond Meat and its new Beyond Burger last month, which sold out in one hour).