If you bite into here, you will eat mineral oil: the vegan burger from Beyond Meat.
“It tasted like meat” and “looked like meat”, write the authors of Öko-Test about the vegan burger from Beyond Meat. In terms of taste, the startup pattie is convincing in the plant burger comparison. Nevertheless, he only achieved the grade sufficient overall – i.e. the school grade 4.
Beyond Meat was founded by Ethan Brown in 2009. The California-based company was one of the first to offer imitation meat. There has been a real hype about the company’s burgers in recent years. Investors like Leonardo DiCaprio, Bill Gates and Tyson Foods financed the startup with a total of 122 million dollars. Meat went public in May 2019 and is currently worth around eight billion US dollars.
The biggest flaw: There are residues of mineral oil in the pattie. Öko-Test sums up the burden “greatly increased”. That was the case last year . At that time, too, Öko-Test tested various meat imitations, and Beyond Meat only got the grade sufficient because of the mineral oil. The oil is the saturated hydrocarbons MOSH. According to the Food Chemistry Institute, they get into food in different ways. For example, through packaging made from waste paper, transport bags made from jute or oil-producing production machines. The problem is that such oil components are easily absorbed by the body and accumulate in organs, as the institute writes . This could cause liver or heart disease.
A lot of fat, but no genetic engineering
So the Beyond Meat Burger is not healthy – especially not because it contains around 20 grams of fat per 100 grams and the dubious additive yeast extract. On its website, the US company presents it as if the products are healthy. Above all, it emphasizes the “high protein content” of the fake meat.
Otherwise, Beyond Meat is not doing ideally either. The company turned over 80 million euros in the third quarter instead of the forecast 110 million euros. That caused the share price to collapse by 28 percent last Monday.
Test: Beyond Meat
The Vegan Mühlen Burger from Rügenwalder performed better than Beyond Meat in Öko-Test. According to the study, it has no mineral oil components and only half as much fat. However, it consists partly of genetically modified soy. According to the test, Meat does not do this. Nevertheless, Rügenwalder received a good rating for its vegan pattie.
Overall, however, the test also shows that German startups are hardly present in the global market for fake meat. In addition to Meat, behind the tested burgers are food companies such as Rügenwalder or supermarket chains such as Aldi. Local start-ups rarely get involved in this branch. The Düsseldorf startup Likemeat, for example, develops meat imitations, but not burger patties. However, Likemeat is no longer German: The company was bought by the Canadian company Livekindly a few weeks ago .