Impossible Foods has had problems meeting demand since at least April 2019. They sell plant-based meat to chain restaurants like Burger King. They also sell to independent restaurants, university cafeterias, sports stadiums, and other places where people get food. They had to stop selling to many places because their production facility was entirely unable to keep up. As a stop-gap measure, they started having their office workers voluntarily work in their food production facility in Oakland. They had 12-hour shifts where it’s kept a constant 38 degrees. They also sped up production by shipping five-pound bricks of fake meat instead of pre-shaped patties. Relief is finally in sight. They signed a co-production agreement with food production giant OSI Industries. OSI, which has 17 food production plants around the world, will start producing Impossible Burgers at one of its locations in the Midwest.
They are getting other plants ready to produce these plant-based burgers as well. OSI Industries has the resources and capacity to solve Impossible Foods production problems and help them scale up. Executives at Impossible Foods initially planned to scale up on their own. They rethought this plan during the spring and summer of 2019. They decided their company would be better off if they partnered with an expert in the food industry. Very successful startups often have growing pains and difficulty meeting demand. On the one hand, it’s a good problem to have. On the other, it frustrates their partners and consumers.
This can lead to lost market share. Like other startups, Impossible Foods needs to take advantage of the demand for plant-based burgers or lose out to competitors like Beyond Meat. Impossible Burgers have been especially in demand since they introduced a new recipe in January 2019. At the time, their burgers were sold in 5,000 locations. They are now sold in 10,000 locations and will be available in 17,000 by the end of the year, thanks to OSI Industries. They will also soon be available in grocery stores. President Dennis Woodside of Impossible Burgers says they decided they didn’t need to go it alone and found their ideal partner in OSI Industries.