Burger King jumps on meat-free bandwagon, launches vegan 'Whopper' burger
Burger King have created a vegan version of its popular ‘Whopper’ burger.
The ‘Whopper’ is the burger chain’s signature sandwich. Introduced in 1957, the product has evolved over the years – but never before has a meat-free version been created.
Launched this week, the ‘Impossible’ burger is being trialled across 59 franchise restaurants in St Louis, in Missouri, in the US.
It was developed in collaboration with Impossible Foods, a California-based start-up company which produces plant-based food substitutes.
READ MORE: How healthy are vegetarian and vegan fast food options?
The meat-free ‘patty’ contains heme, a protein taken from soybean roots said to have a similar texture to meat.
It is said to taste just like the real deal.
let’s goooooo https://t.co/prLGGwTLAo
— Burger King (@BurgerKing) April 1, 2019
“I have high expectations that it’s going to be big business, not just a niche product,” Fernando Machado, Burger King’s chief marketing officer, told The New York Times.
So does it stand up to the test?
The burger has been met with popular approval on Twitter, with descriptions such as “convincing” and “familiar”.
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@BurgerKing + @ImpossibleFoods First comes love, then comes marriage, then comes a plant based burger in a wrapper with lettuce! 🌱🍔 #vegetarian #plantbased pic.twitter.com/oiNxuxL8Cq
— ashleymorellinfocus (@ashleyinfocus) April 2, 2019
I’ve been a vegetarian for almost 10 years. I just had an #ImpossibleBurger tonight, and I’m blown away. It’s kinda hard to describe what it’s like to eat something that convincing after so long. It’s not some life-changing moment, but it’s familiar in a really compelling way.
— Martin Strobel (@mkstrobel) April 2, 2019
@redrobinburgers had an @ImpossibleFoods #ImpossibleBurger today. Make this a regular thing.
— Michael Mainer (@MichaelMainer) April 3, 2019
Before switching to a vegetarian diet after college, for health and ethical reasons I was a serious meat lover. When I recently tried the plant based #impossibleburger I asked my waitress to check w/ the kitchen. The similarity in taste and texture was shocking. #newswise pic.twitter.com/rg0I8LC4EI
— nirmalaheriza:DrYoga (@nirmalaheriza) April 1, 2019
I just had a vegan whopper. @BurgerKing nailed this thing. #foodstuffs #impossiblewhopper #stl pic.twitter.com/92ALsyg1zm
— Tim Convy (@timconvy) April 1, 2019
The meat-free meal joins the growing number of fast food retailers creating meat-free alternatives for their customers.
READ MORE: Should veganism be considered a religion?
This includes Greggs’ vegan sausage roll and the McDonald’s vegetarian Happy Meal and vegan McNuggets.
Fast food chains including Subway, Pizza Hut and KFC have also launched vegetarian and vegan alternatives.
It is tapping into a wider, global interest in veganism. In the UK alone, 7% of the national population identify as vegan.