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It’s not chicken. It’s a pea-based chicken alternative with an odd backstory

The development of plant-based meat has been quite fascinating to watch for those of us here at the Optimist Daily. Just a couple years ago meat alternatives such as Tofurkey were almost a joke and certainly not in the mainstream. These days it seems there’s a new plant-based meat alternative on the market each week—and so without further ado, we present to you a Swiss company by the name of Planted that hopes to do for chicken what Impossible Foods did for beef.

Planted claims its plant-based chicken — made from pea protein, pea fiber, water, and sunflower oil — is indistinguishable from the real thing, and as a meat alternative, it avoids some of the ethical and environmental concerns that come with raising poultry.

According to TechCrunch, the team behind Planted has been working on the product for more than a year and a half, but the company only formally came together a week ago. It grew out of research into, of all things, slime excreted by hagfish. Supposedly, that helped Planted’s founders better understand the structure of imitation meats and led to planted.chicken.

If you’re not ready to taste slime-inspired imitation chicken, that’s okay. For now, this first product can only be found in a handful of restaurants in Switzerland.

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