Burger King to launch its meat-free Whopper burger in the UK today

Burger King to launch its meat-free Whopper burger in the UK today

Read Time:   |  6th January 2020

Burger King is releasing its plant-based Whopper burger in the UK today, but some vegans are unhappy after the advert reveals the patty is cooked alongside beef.

Burger King has announced that its plant-based Whopper burger will launch in the UK today.

Available to purchase exclusively via the app on January 6th and 7th, the plant-based patty will roll out nationwide on January 8th.

The Rebel Whopper is similar to Burger King’s beef burgers as it features tomatoes, lettuce, mayonnaise, pickles and sliced white onions on sesame seed bun, but features a plant-based patty from The Vegetarian Butcher in place of beef.

The Vegetarian Butcher’s plant-based patty is made from a blend of sustainable soy, wheat, vegetable oil, herbs and onion

Cross-contamination

Whilst the burger is made using a meat-free patty, Burger King’s advert states that the patty is cooked on the same grill as the meat burgers meaning a number of vegans will be hesitant to try the new offering thanks to major cross-contamination risks.

The mayonnaise used in the Whopper also contains eggs so is not suitable for vegans, although the burger can be ordered without to make it plant-based.

Discussing the issue of cross-contamination, animal rights charity PETA said: “We urge vegans not to insist that their food be cooked on equipment separate from that used to cook meat; doing so doesn’t help any additional animals, and it only makes restaurants less inclined to offer vegan choices (which, again, hurts animals).”

Criticism

Many vegans have voiced their concerns on Burger King’s Instagram post announcing the launch stating their disappointment that the burger is not suitable for vegans but appears to have been designed to appeal to flexitarian customers.

“What are you playing at @burgerkinguk it’s not hard to cook the burgers on a separate grill and use vegan mayo! Sort it out!!,” shared one user.

“You didn’t listen, Burger King. Not even bothered making it accessible to vegetarians, let alone vegans. Nothing but a marketing ploy,” wrote another.

‘Create products for meat lovers’

Speaking about the partnership, Jaap Korteweg, the founder of The Vegetarian Butcher, said: “When I started The Vegetarian Butcher nine years ago, my goal was to be the biggest butcher in the world and create products for meat lovers, with the ambition of providing the same taste and experience, but plant-based.

“Working with Burger King on the Rebel Whopper has been amazing. We can’t wait for all Burger King guests to enjoy it.”

David Shear, President of Burger King EMEA, added: “We are confident that the Rebel Whopper is the sandwich everyone has been waiting for and provides the ultimate plant-based patty alternative with the iconic Whopper build.

“I’m excited to let the Rebel Whopper do the talking and see whether our guests can tell the difference!”

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