Vegan power: Air New Zealand serves Impossible plant-based burger

The carrier has teamed up with Californian startup Impossible Foods to give passengers the option of meatless meat

The future of ethical in-flight food is here as New Zealand’s flag carrier has started providing their passengers with an unprecedented animal product-free dish.

Air New Zealand will serve an award-winning, plant-based Impossible Burger – the first airline in the world to do so.

The main and magical ingredient of the meatless burger, produced by Silicon Valley startup Impossible Foods, is based on a molecule called heme that is derived from soybean roots and contains iron. The same molecule is found in animal meat, which makes the plant-based option almost unrecognisable from real beef burgers.

According to the carrier’s official statement, has been watching Impossible Foods for some time and has been impressed with the work it’s carrying out.

“Like Impossible Foods, we are committed to offering our customers a fresh and innovative approach to cuisine. We’re incredibly excited about this partnership and the opportunity to offer our Business Premier customers travelling from Los Angeles to Auckland a delicious plant-based option that tastes just like the real deal,” said the airline’s inflight customer experience manager Niki Chave.

“We’re confident vegetarians, flexitarians and dedicated meat lovers alike will enjoy the delicious taste of the Impossible Burger, but for those who want to stay with the tried and true it will sit alongside our regular selection of menu items prepared by our talented culinary team and consultant chefs.”

The main ingredient - heme - makes the plant-based burger almost undistiguishable from real beef — Impossible Foods Vegan power: Air New Zealand serves Impossible plant-based burger
The main ingredient – heme – makes the plant-based burger almost indistinguishable from real beef — Impossible Foods

Patrick O. Brown, the founder and CEO of Impossible Foods, said the company’s mission was to make the global food system more sustainable by making products that don’t compromise on sustainability, nutrition or taste.

“We launched with high-credibility, innovative chefs known for their delicious burgers, so it’s no coincidence our first airline partner has been named Airline of the Year for five straight years.

“The Impossible Burger is available in nearly 2,500 restaurants throughout the United States and now Air New Zealand will help us take the Impossible Burger to even greater heights.”

Air New Zealand will serve the Impossible Burger on flights NZ1 and NZ5 from Los Angeles to Auckland until late October.