The Evening Post Stuff

The Evening Post: Why McDonald’s Doesn’t Have A Vegan Meat Burger In The US


We have all heard of Impossible Foods and Beyond Meat, who make products that taste like meat but really have no meat in them.  Fast-food chains like Burger King and White Castle are starting to use these meat like products.  But there is one holdout in the United States, McDonald’s.  In the 12 months ending in March 2019, restaurant operators increased purchases of plant based protein 36 percent.  That’s in an environment where foot traffic in restaurants has remained relatively flat since 2014.

Traditional veggie burgers started popping up on grocery store shelves in the 1980s.  Restaurants added them to their menus as an easy option for vegetarian diners.  But veggie burgers have also gotten a bad rap.  Made with black beans, lentils or tofu, they don’t really taste like a real burger.  In fact, they’re usually pretty tasteless.  Beyond Meat and Impossible Foods are trying to change that.  Their plant-based burgers mimic actual beef’s taste, texture and look.  The Beyond Burger uses pea proteins and beet juice to achieve taste and texture.

The Impossible Burger has found its own secret ingredient: heme.  The iron-containing molecule is found in our blood as well as beef.  It’s what gives meat a pink color and a metallic taste.  To make a vegan friendly burger that contains the molecule, Impossible Foods uses genetically modified soy. And as an added bonus, the heme makes an Impossible Burger look like it’s bleeding juices — just like a meat patty.

Watch below as CNBC explains if McDonald’s will ever begin to sell these products.

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