Impossible Foods launches in Asian grocery stores

The faux beef burgers from Impossible Foods will be hitting grocery stores in Hong Kong and Singapore starting Tuesday.

Their arrival comes as the American plant-based meat company seeks to expand its footprint in Asia, before entering the potentially lucrative mainland Chinese market.

Rival Beyond Meat said it had signed a deal to open a production facility near Shanghai back in September.

Impossible's Chief Executive Pat Brown says they hope to build a complete plant-based supply chain in China and make it a domestic industry.

But the company says they're still awaiting approval from Chinese regulators.

Their key ingredient, heme, is made from genetically modified yeast and it requires approval in China.

Nick Halla, a senior vice president at Impossible, says the use of heme in their products is essential and trying to find a substitute wouldn't achieve the same taste.

Impossible will be available in some 200 grocery stores across Hong Kong and Singapore this week in a move that was accelerated by the health crisis, thanks to subdued sales to restaurants.