McDonald’s to Test Plant-Based Burgers in Canada

McDonald’s will provide a plant-based hamburger made by Beyond Meat at some of its locations in Canada, the fast-food giant stated on Thursday, marking the business’s very first foray into the growing market for meat options in North America.

In the meantime, however, the rollout of the “P.L.T.”– lettuce, tomato and plant– is just a short-term trial. The brand-new McDonald’s hamburger will go on sale at 28 dining establishments in southwestern Ontario for 12 weeks, starting Monday.

“This test enables us for more information about real-world implications of serving the P.L.T., consisting of client need and effect on dining establishment operations,” Ann Wahlgren, the company’s vice president for global menu method, said in a declaration on Thursday.

Amid a consumer fad for vegetarian items that replicate the taste and texture of meat, restaurant sales of plant-based options have increased significantly this year, and Beyond Meat’s share cost has soared given that the business went public in May.

McDonald’s has toyed with the possibility of presenting a plant-based hamburger for months. In the spring, the company dealt with Nestlé to evaluate a meatless patty in Germany, the Big Vegan TS. And in an earnings employ May, the business’s president, Steve Easterbrook, said McDonald’s was keeping tabs on the plant-based meatless alternative market “to ensure the customer trend is sustaining.”

Even as customer demand for meatless “meat” grows, there is factor for caution, some in the industry say. A wider rollout would develop logistical obstacles for McDonald’s staff members and take up minimal area on the grill, stated Jonathan Maze, the executive editor of Restaurant Business Magazine, a trade publication.

“They would like to know if the sales are going to be worth the difficulty,” Mr. Maze said.

McDonald’s has actually served vegetarian products in the past, including a McVegan hamburger in Finland and Sweden. This is the first time the fast-food company has offered one of the new generation of plant-based burgers developed to taste like meat in North America.

Burger King currently provides a plant-based hamburger made by Beyond’s primary rival, Impossible Foods, at all its restaurants nationwide. And in recent weeks, a number of major fast-food brands have actually started to try out meatless meat. Dunkin’ started using a breakfast sandwich made with plant-based sausage at its locations in Manhattan. Last month, KFC offered its entire test supply of a new plant-based fried “chicken” at an Atlanta branch in five hours. But it remains uncertain whether any of those trials will cause more across the country rollouts. Major chains are still deciding whether the demand for plant-based hamburgers will translate to other meatless options, like sausage. Tim Hortons, the coffee and doughnut chain, recently pulled plant-based hamburgers and breakfast sandwiches from a few of its areas in Canada.

“I still have a particular level of apprehension, frankly, about the long-lasting staying power of this,” Mr. Maze stated. “We’re still simply a couple of months in.”