Impossible Foods is on a roll. Following the breakout success of its now-famous Impossible Burger a few years ago, the company has been busy expanding its repertoire of plant-based (and astonishingly meat-like) proteins, and today announced the launch of its latest product: Impossible Meatballs.
“Impossible Meatballs come preformed and fully cooked, and work perfectly in all of the meatball recipes that people love — from spaghetti to meatball subs,” the company said in a press release. “Each meatball is made with a custom mix of Impossible Burger and Impossible Sausage, as well as a savory homestyle meatball seasoning blend. [The meatballs] come in a resealable freezer bag and are ready to reheat via oven, microwave, stovetop, or air fryer — making a quick and convenient meal or snack.”
In many ways, this announcement is familiar. Much like Impossible Burger and Impossible Sausage, these new meatballs are designed to mimic the look, feel, and flavor of a ground meat product. They’re also notable for their relatively small carbon footprint — requiring “75% less land, 85% less water, and 90% less greenhouse gas emissions to produce than animal-based meatballs,” according to Impossible’s own life cycle analysis.
But in other ways, this announcement is completely different. In contrast to the Impossible Burger, which was originally only available in a handful of restaurants and didn’t arrive on store shelves until years after its debut, Impossible Meatballs are set to be widely available within the next few weeks, thanks to a new partnership with Walmart.
“Available at Walmart stores starting this month and coming to additional retailers later this year, the new Impossible Meatballs mark an expansion of Impossible Foods’ presence at Walmart, which is launching a dedicated plant-based destination in its frozen aisle that will include Impossible products at more than 3,000 locations. Impossible Foods’ rapid expansion in grocery stores is a critical part of the company’s mission to transform the global food system with compelling plant-based products that consumers prefer over animal products.
Perhaps the most exciting difference, though, is price. Whereas Impossible Burger products currently cost about 67 cents per ounce in retail stores (a 12-ounce pack costs an eye-watering $7.99), a 14-ounce pack of Impossible Meatballs is set to sell for $6.48 — approximately 46 cents per ounce. That’s not enough of a price drop to make them cheaper than animal-based meatballs, but it’s certainly a move in the right direction, and an encouraging sign that plant-based meat might become even more affordable in the future as production ramps up.