Why Burger King Really Got Rid Of Its Veggie Burger

Bloomberg reports that in October of 2019, fast food chain Burger King decided to ditch their Morningstar Farms-produced veggie burger patty in favor of a more realistic plant-based meat product made by the tech food company Impossible Foods. When the item debuted in 2002, Burger King was the first fast food company to carry a veggie burger nationwide. According to CNN Money, the company had hoped the introduction of this meat-free option would help them appeal to a new group of consumers who were uninterested in their otherwise meat-heavy menu. The veggie burger patty was formulated by Morningstar Farms specifically for the fast food chain, who required that the veggie burger be free of soy, which can trigger serious food allergies in some people.

The original Burger King veggie burger contained 330 calories and came topped with lettuce, reduced-fat mayonnaise, and tomato slices on the chain's standard sesame-seed bun.

Burger King's Impossible Whopper has so far been very successful

In an interview with CNBC, Impossible Foods CFO David Lee stated that the tech food company is trying to be thought of as "making better meat consumed by the meat eater — competing on the level playing field with a better product," versus most classic alternative meat companies which generally cater to people with meat-free diets. Lee said that nine out of 10 Impossible Foods customers are traditional meat eaters who are interested in exploring meat-free alternatives for a variety of reasons. 

As of June 2020, Burger King was offering their newly introduced Impossible Whopper in 7,500 locations nationwide. Burger King parent company Restaurant Brands stated that the chain has seen a growth in sales that can be attributed to the introduction of the Impossible Whopper and the inclusion of the vegetarian and vegan-friendly option on it's value menu. Impossible Foods also recently begun providing plant-based sausage patties to the burger chain, which appear on their breakfast menu.

The new Impossible Whopper contains 630 calories and comes with tomatoes, lettuce, pickles, mayonnaise, ketchup, and onions on the standard sesame-seed bun (via Prevention).