A group of food science students have taken a huge step toward the future by creating and winning a major award for the Rephyll Burger - a realistic, animal-free beef burger. This product is all plant-based, and its creators say it offers up the same taste and texture as conventional beef, but made from low-fat, nutritious, and more environmentally-friendly mushrooms, pulses, and textured plant proteins.
According to the team, food science students at Canada's McGill University, the uncooked product resembles raw beef, and when cooked, displays the same sizzle, smells, and browning found in traditional meat.
This new burger and its concept bears a striking resemblance to the Impossible Burger, which last month was launched as the very first plant-based burger to taste like real beef. The Impossible Burger was created by analyzing thousands of plants for meat-like taste, smell, and cooking properties, and then extracting those components from selected plants to re-build a product like beef.
The Impossible Burger debuted to popular acclaim at the Momofuku Nishi restaurant in NYC 2 weeks ago, where it’s incredible taste, texture, and bloody appearance has garnered major press and critical praise from diners.
And now, it looks like the Rephyll Burger could be an impressive new innovation of the same concept but with more veggie-centric ingredients. Upon winning the award, team member Patrick Liu announced they intended to seek capital investment to eventually scale up production and sell the burger commercially.
It remains to be seen how much it tastes like beef – which would be a critical factor to its popular success. But if getting top prize at the world's largest food science event means anything, they could be onto something big.