Hold on there, you Big Mac lovers. There’s a new kid on the block. Macdonalds, you got competition.
Vegan fast-food chain Veggie Grill are rolling out a new range of giant size burgers to rival the Big Mac. Only Veggie Grill’s burgers are 100% plant based, and made from pea, soya and wheat proteins !
If that doesn’t sound tempting, just think about eating a cow.
Anyway, they are made entirely from non-animal ingredients, and another Vegan company, Beyond Meat, supported by Bill Gates and Twitter’s Biz Stone is currently launching a “Beyond Burger,” which is intended to taste just like beef.
This burger will be on sale in food stores rather than fast food outlets, once again made entirely of plant-based ingredients – pea, yeast extract and coconut and sunflower oils. However, it is hoped that the Beyond Burger will also be available at Veggie Grill outlets in the near future.
The US chain of Veggie Grills has 28 locations at present in California, Washington and Oregon. But if current plans are to be activated, the company will ultimately expand throughout the country.
Meat consumption in the United States is declining, although it has to be said, it has a long way to decline. However, growing numbers of younger adults are looking more carefully at the cruelty issues prevailing in the meat and dairy industry, and the need for reform.
The relentless need for meat has caused a great surge in efficiency in the meat packaging industry over the years. Statistics from the early days show the trend. As animal slaughter changed from being a farming job to an industrial job, the ethics changed also. Early production lines saw animals being killed at the rate of 50 per hour. By the 1980’s new plants were in operation whereby the slaughter rate was between 150 and 200 per hour, and modern plants can now go upwards of 400 an hour.
Respect for the cattle is nil. They are kept in poor conditions, fed with growth chemicals to increase their weight, and killed cruelly and mercilessly. It takes a large amount of grain to feed up the cattle, so huge areas of land worldwide, including tropical rainforests, are flattened to be re-claimed for grain production. Whole eco-systems are destroyed in the requirement for fertile land simply to provide food for animals to supply our need for meat.
A report from a New York agency states that Google searches for 2016 have seen a marked rise in locals looking for Vegan restaurants and juice bars.
Several new Vegan restaurants have opened in New York in 2016, suggesting that interest in healthy eating and plant-based diets has risen during the year to unprecedented levels. The future should show no sign of a let-up in this trend.
In the UK, it was estimated earlier this year, after a MORI poll, that over 1% of the adult population (about 500,000) have adopted a plant based diet. There are also upwards of 1 million following some sort of vegetarian diet.
As more people in the news take on a Vegan lifestyle, so the word grows, that a plant-based diet is not a fad, but a positive and healthy step.
We have (in no particular order) Stevie Wonder, Jennifer Lopez, Brad Pitt, Michelle Pfeiffer, Bryan Adams, Jay-Z and Beyonce, Bill Clinton, Toby Maguire, Jessica Simpson, Demi Moore, Natalie Portman, Pamela Anderson, Moby, Morrissey, Miley Cyrus, Rapper RZA and Hunger Games’ Woody Harrelson and Liam Hemsworth, all in the Vegan ranks. If you have all those on your side then you have a good cross section of celebs to bang the Vegan drum to quite a few age groups.
As more showbiz celebrities on both sides of the Atlantic renounce a meat and dairy based diet in favour of Vegan and Vegetarian options, those figures are only going to grow.