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Plant-based startup Impossible Foods is ‘seeking approval’ to sell its meatless burgers in Europe, a major news outlet has revealed.
According to CNBC, the company has filed a request to gain authorization for the use of soy leghemoglobin (commonly known as heme) in the European Union.
The application, which was filed on September 30, has been reported as a way to ‘make inroads’ and ‘expand’ the company’s presence outside the US.
While the European Food Safety Authority is yet to respond to the request, news outlets have pointed out its ‘strict legal regime on genetically modified food’ which could cause delays in its approval, if it receives one.
Earlier this year, Impossible Foods debuted its plant-based burger in US grocery stores – after receiving approval from the Food and Drug Administration to use heme has a color additive.
The ruling meant Impossible Foods could sell its products directly to consumers, instead of only to restaurants.
Impossible Foods itself considers its meatless patty to be plant-based rather than vegan.
This is because, in 2017, heme was fed to rats to test its safety – 180 rats were killed as a result. CEO Pat Brown reacted to the controversy, publishing a statement titled The Agonizing Dilemma of Animal Testing.