Impossible Foods was named the "preferred plant-based burger" at select eateries at Walt Disney World Resort, Disneyland Resort and on Disney cruise ships. But reaching a cross-section of domestic and international vacationers is just one facet of the partnership.
The Redwood City, Calif. based company, which serves its plant-based burger patties through Burger King and White Castle, sees the Disney relationship as a way to reach people in a unique environment where they’re excited to be.
"Disneyland and Disney World are some of most Instagrammed places in the world," said Jessica Appelgren, vice president of communications at Impossible Foods. "Think about where people want to be seen and taking pictures with their food. Disney is up there with the Eiffel Tower."
In addition to diners at the "Happiest Place on Earth," Appelgren points to Disney bloggers as another source of publicity.
"Disney is known for culinary," she said. "There is a whole ecosystem of blogs devoted to Disney foods."
Impossible Foods will capture foodies at the Disney California Adventure Food & Wine Festival, commencing Friday.
The company’s plant-based take on ground beef will be served in a range of ways for festival-goers, including as a hamburger with guacamole and pepper jack cheese, a straight-up cheeseburger and as a meatball sub.
The following weekend, J. Michael Melton, Impossible Foods’ head of culinary, will put on live demonstrations at the festival.
The Impossible Foods burger will be served daily at Tony’s Town Square Restaurant at the Magic Kingdom Park at Disney’s Florida resort and at Smokejumpers Grill at Disney California Adventure in Anaheim, Calif., among others.
Sustainability has become increasingly important to Disney theme park and cruise marketers, which includes the impact food choices make on the environment. A major purpose at Impossible Foods is to lessen the impact of cattle ranching and concentrated animal feeding operations on the environment.
Already, more than 400 plant-based dishes are served at Disney’s Florida resort and the California park complex will introduce more vegetable dishes by this spring.
As for Impossible Foods, reaching people who are already in the frame of mind to try something new, be it a rollercoaster or a plant-based burger, presents a key opportunity.
"The most important marketing strategy we have is getting people to try it," said Appelgren.