Progress! McDonald’s France will launch it’s very first vegetarian burger on October 10, 2017, aptly named “Le Grand Veggie.” The all-vegetarian patty will consist of a mixture of carrots and salsify, topped with red and white cabbage and a red pesto sauce on a bun with pumpkin, sesame, and poppy seeds.
McDonald’s France wants to offer more options for their flexitarian and vegetarian base. Le Grand Veggie does include cheese, so be sure to ask without if you’re avoiding dairy – details about the ingredients of the pesto are not currently available.
The news comes on the heels of McDonald’s testing a “McVegan” burger to their Tampere, Finland location through November to gauge consumer demand. In May of this year, McDonald’s added a “Veggie McSpice” to their Norway menus. Finally, it seems like McDonald’s is getting with the times and realizing that their non-meat-eating customers aren’t happy with just a basic salad, apple slices from the kids’ menu, and a giant soda — or that veggie burgers, in general, have been attracting consumers who are not necessarily vegan or vegetarian.
According to the 2017 Protein Alternatives Report by global market research firm Mintel, Millennials are especially open to meat alternatives; 64 percent have tried meatless burgers. Meanwhile, only one in five Millennials has tried a Big Mac.
Whether one is gravitating towards meatless options due to diet, environmental concerns, health, or animal welfare concerns, veggie burgers are no longer a fringe trend. If even McDonald’s gets it, then that’s truly a sign of the time — and hopefully, the Veggie McSpice or a vegan version of Le Grand Veggie will make its way to the U.S. After all, with the widespread availability of a chain like McDonald’s, their kidney bean-based patty could be the only affordable vegan option available to some consumers.
When it comes to fast food, there are chains that have put forth the effort to reach out to their vegan, vegetarian, and flexitarian customers. Taco Bell is one of the best examples of this. Not only does the Tex-Mex chain make it easier than ever to order a plant-based meal via their mobile app, where you can add or remove ingredients at will, they even have an online guide that details popular substitutions. If you’re craving a burger, you can go to White Castle, which added a second vegan burger option to their menu. Fast food restaurants are transforming as consumer demands change – so here’s hoping for way more plant-based options!
To learn more about trends and developments in the plant-based food space, check out our podcast #EatForThePlanet with Nil Zacharias.
Image source: McDonald’s