KFC stores in the U.S. will begin offering Beyond Chicken starting January 10 as an alternative to their traditional chicken dishes. Beyond Chicken tastes like chicken but does not contain any meat and is made from plant-based ingredients. This move comes as vegan and vegetarian diets have become very popular in recent years. KFC and Beyond Meat, a food company based in Los Angeles, are working together to provide innovative plant-based products that appeal to both meat-eaters and non-meat-eaters.
Due to changes trends in eating habits, particularly among teens and young adults, a significant number of consumers are now opting for plant-based alternatives as they try to improve their eating habits or maintain healthy diets. The fast-food giant hopes to expand its target audience the attracting customers turned off by the meat-based products.
KFC started testing Beyond Fried Chicken in 2019. The tests were carried out in various locations such as Nashville, Atlanta and Charlotte. The final test was carried out in Southern California where the menu sold out in just one week. The plant-based chicken comes as grocery stores and restaurants are beginning to offer more plant-based products.
Beyond Fried Chicken is prepared in common fryers. Thus, it may not be acceptable to all vegans and vegetarians. The plant-based products will be available for a limited time. Depending on how the introduction pans out, it could be available in the longer term.
Apart from the adoption of healthy eating habits, the market has had issues with the supply of traditional meats since the onset of the coronavirus pandemic. People are also more aware of the impact of animal-based products on the environment, and a good number are now willing to play their part to combat the situation.
KFC joins other international fast-food brands that are trying to appeal to vegans and vegetarians. Burger King recently started selling the Impossible Burger, and 7-11 has started offering soy burgers as a replacement to beef burgers. Analysts expect plant-based food options for traditional meat-based fast food products to grow significantly in the coming years.
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