Lifestyle / Food And Drink

Sandisiwe Mbhele
Lifestyle Journalist
2 minute read
11 Oct 2021
9:22 am

WATCH: Is lab meat the future? We try Burger King’s vegan options

Sandisiwe Mbhele

'The Citizen' tried fast-food chain Burger King's new vegan and plant-based options. Here's our verdict.

Picture: iStock

Burger King South Africa has caught up to the craze of plant-based and meat-free patties.

Consumers are now, more than ever, conscious of what they eat, how it is made and where it comes from. Vegan, vegetarian and flexitarian lifestyles have become a consistent framework in choosing the path to healthy eating.

However, fast food chains weren’t created to cater for this type of lifestyle.

Burger King SA has now tapped into this market and their research has shown that the primary driver of plant-based eating was directly related to health, with four out of five consumers revealing that they were committed to eating healthily, the statement read.

The Citizen lifestyle team had the opportunity to try out Burger King’s meatless alternatives, which are the plant-based Whopper, Vegan Royale and Vegan Nuggets.

Watch The Citizen’s Burger King plant-based taste test below:

There is a growing trend of people completely removing meat from their diet but there are also those who choose to have both meat and non-meat-based dishes in their diet and are known as “flexitarians”, an option to not over-consume meat. Burger King is in support of this.

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By working with partners such as The Vegetarian Butcher and having an endorsement from industry leaders like V-Label, the fast-food chain says this move is more than a trend.

Another food company that has jumped on the meatless train is Future Farm.

The international brand will have its plant-based meat range available nationwide in Checkers stores. They have developed meatless products that taste and feel like meat. There is a strong movement by companies like Future Farm to create the meatiest range in the plant-based sector as many non-vegan eaters care about the texture and taste of “beyond burgers”.

The old homemade beetroot, mushroom patties won’t do for some consumers. “Foodtech” creating plant-based burgers in labs for mass consumption, created with more natural plant ingredients using technology designed to appeal in flavour and texture to meat eaters and vegetarians alike.

However, there has been some backlash on the future of meat, with some studies showing that plant-based alternatives aren’t necessarily healthier than real meat options. Because some products have high amounts of sodium and the many other ingredients used to create them, Green Matters reports.

An episode on Netflix’s Explained, titled The Future of Meat season two, shows the comparison of plant-based meat alternatives and the lengths companies go to to make them.