Impossible Foods has secured an additional $200 million in funding. To date, the plant-based meat company has raised nearly $1.5 billion.
The new funding follows the $500 million the food-tech startup landed earlier this year.
The latest round of funding was led by hedge fund Coatue Management LLC. Other investors include Mirae Asset Global Investments, Temasek Holdings Pte, and XN Capital.
According to the California-based brand, its newest investment will go towards expanding research and development of new products. It will also be used for other internal functions.
Impossible Burger Hits Store Shelves
Impossible Foods’ award-winning Impossible Burger, which looks, cooks, and tastes similar to animal-derived meat, launched in restaurants in 2016. Last year, it made its debut on the West Coast in Southern California Gelson’s Markets. It made its grocery-store debut on the East Coast at Wegmans.
The new round of funding follows Impossible Foods’ push to enter supermarkets and other major retailers amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
The outbreak forced restaurants to close in order to limit the spread of the virus. It also disrupted meat supply chains. As a result, experts projected U.S. meat sales to drop by more than $20 billion this year.
Impossible Takes On The Meat Industry
With meat sales down, there has been an increased demand for plant-based proteins.
In June, Impossible Foods launched its direct-to-consumer online store to make the Impossible Burger more accessible to consumers amid the pandemic. Customers are now able to order Impossible Foods’ vegan meat online for contactless delivery. In July, the Impossible Burger launched in nearly 2,100 Walmart locations and all 503 Trader Joe’s stores across the U.S.
“Our growth in retail has certainly been a big part of the story,” David Lee, Impossible Foods’ CFO, said in an interview. “For us, throughout this current [pandemic] period, we’ve just tried to adjust the way the meat-eater is increasingly purchasing the product.”
Earlier this year, the company slashed the prices of Impossible Burger sold in restaurants by 15 percent. It said the price cuts were made to match meat prices.
“We are desperately eager to bring down our prices as fast as we possibly can, but we’re selling every pound we can make as fast as we can make it,” the company’s CEO Pat Brown said during a press conference.
Brown added: “So there is plenty of demand from consumers at the current price. And, of course, as the price comes down, eventually it’s going to be game over for the animal ag industry.”