Burger King Canada has announced the launch of the Impossible Whopper across its chains nationwide, starting next month. Rolling out initially across outlets in Ontario, the fast food chain’s meat-free version of the iconic Whopper will be made using food tech giant Impossible Foods’ famous “bleeding” heme-filled patties made using only plants.
Burger King and Impossible Foods has taken its partnership to Canada this time, launching the Impossible Whopper across locations in Ontario on Monday (March 22) ahead of a cross-Canada roll-out on April 12. It comes after the fast food giant pioneered partnerships with alternative protein players, forging the first-ever collaboration with Silicon Valley startup Impossible Foods in 2019 to launch a meatless whopper in the U.S. market.
The new plant-based version of the Whopper available at Burger King Canada will be made with a flame-grilled Impossible Burger patty, topped with sliced tomatoes, onions, lettuce, pickles, ketchup and conventional egg-based mayonnaise, making it suitable for vegetarians but not vegans.
We also know those guests – and really, all Canadians – are always looking for more choice, and are increasingly interested in options without beef.Matt Wright, General Manager, Burger King Canada
Matt Wright, general manager of Burger King Canada, says the move comes in response to growing consumer demand for more plant-based offerings.
“The Whopper is an icon, and we know how much our guests love its unique, flame-grilled taste. But, we also know those guests – and really, all Canadians – are always looking for more choice, and are increasingly interested in options without beef,” commented Wright.
“We’re thrilled to have worked with the team at Impossible Foods to create a burger that is truly just as juicy and delicious as the classic Whopper.”
“We’ve been delighted by the popularity of the Impossible Whopper in the United States and are thrilled to bring it to our Impossible Foods fans in Canada,” added Dennis Woodside, president of Impossible Foods, who believes its expanded Canadian partnership with the chain will be core to its mission to eliminate animal agriculture.
According to Burger King, customers who opt for the Impossible Whopper instead of the animal-based version contribute to carbon emissions savings equivalent to driving about 520 million miles in an average car.
“Our mission is to sell Impossible products everywhere conventional animal meat is sold today, and that includes Burger King, whose huge footprint and affordable prices can make delicious plant-based burgers accessible to more Canadians than ever before,” said Woodside.
Outside of the U.S. and Canada, the Burger King franchise has partnered with a number of different food techs to expand its meatless menu options, launching Australian startup v2food’s plant-based patties in South Korea, Japan, the Philippines and Thailand. V2food also supplies the plant-based Rebel Whopper in New Zealand, and at Burger King sister franchise Hungry Jack’s in Australia.
Our mission is to sell Impossible products everywhere conventional animal meat is sold today.Dennis Woodside, President, Impossible Foods
In mainland China, the burger chain has teamed up with Unilever-owned The Vegetarian Butcher to supply its plant-based patties.
Other QSRs have also jumped on the bandwagon in response to mainstream demand from flexitarians and vegans, particularly in the wake of Covid-19. The latest to make headlines is Impossible Foods rival Beyond Meat’s feat of landing a three-year deal to supply McDonald’s for its new “McPlant” line, as well as an international collaboration with Yum! Brands, which will see Beyond Meat co-develop new exclusive plant-based menu items for the group’s three biggest subsidiary chains: KFC, Pizza Hut and Taco Bell.
Lead image courtesy of Burger King.