Burgrill, India’s leading homegrown burger chain, has just launched the one of country’s first plant-based chicken burger. Partnering with fellow local startup Greenest Foods, the new Green Meat Pounder burger will roll out in 24 outlets across 15 major cities in India. It marks the first time an Indian QSR has added plant-based meat on its menu.
Burgrill has debuted one of India’s first-ever plant-based chicken burger, developed with homegrown food tech Greenest Foods. As a local fast food chain operating nearly 30 outlets across 15 cities, the move marks the first time a leading homegrown QSR company has incorporated plant-based meat into its menu.
The Green Meat Pounder
The newly introduced burger, The Green Meat Pounder, will feature a vegan chicken patty developed by Greenest and made from ingredients like soy protein, chickpea protein and a blend of plant-based fibres.
Sandwiched between two sesame seed buns, the patty is topped with sliced tomatoes, fresh lettuce, onions, pickles and cheese. It is a vegetarian take on Burgrill’s flagship quarter pounder burger and cooked on a separate grill from meat-based items on the menu, but the restaurant has clarified that the Green Meat Pounder is not suitable for vegans as it does contain dairy or egg-based ingredients.
Commenting on the launch, Burgrill co-founder Shreh Madan said the plans to add a plant-based burger has been “over a year” in the works, and that the chain is “thrilled to finally introduce” the vegetarian burger to its customers.
“From finding the right ingredients to the perfect tenderness and juiciness to our patty that can be grilled to perfection for our audiences. We have tried various versions of the plant-based meat patty before we finalized on this one specially curated according to our needs and demands by Greenest Foods,” the co-founder explained.
“With the launch of Green Meat Pounder, we wanted to cater to [the] fast-growing eco-conscious audience,” Madan added. “The price points will be economical and the taste will be at par with other signature pounders of Burgrill’s menu offering.”
At the moment, the Green Meat Pounder is sold for INR 249 (US$3.30), with other signature quarter pounders on Burgrill’s menu priced slightly lower, between INR 150-200 (US$2-2.70).
Mainstreaming plant-based meat in India
For Greenest, its new collaboration with Burgrill marks another step in the right direction to make plant-based meats more widely available to consumers across India, especially younger generations that are increasingly making flexitarian or plant-forward changes to their diets in the name of health and sustainability.
“We are excited to bring the plant-based meat experience to patrons of Burgrill,” said the food tech’s CEO Gaurav Sharma. “We feel that owing to Burgrill’s millennial-centric brand appeal and loyal consumer base, it is uniquely positioned to launch this concept and lead consumer adoption for plant-based meats.”
Greenest has previously alluded to working with more foodservice players as part of its expansion strategy, after adding new products to its retail line-up. Some of the products Greenest offers include “hyper-realistic” vegan shami kebabs and plant-based minced meat keema.
Sharma says that the Burgrill launch marks the “first in the series of branded collaborations with India’s most loved brands across cuisines to trigger the wider adoption of plant-based meats across the country.”
Plant-based options have been steadily on the rise across India recently, with India’s round-the-clock convenience chain 24Seven launching vegan hot dogs across over 90 outlets in the country with local startup BVeg Foods and retail chain Nature’s Basket adding a separate plant-based meat section to its platform within the last month alone.
Varun Deshpande, managing director of GFI India, described the momentum in the industry as “exciting” and said the latest Burgrill and Greeneset collaboration is an “indication of the category’s potential in India.”
“Providing delicious, innovative options for meat-craving consumers will usher in a new era of ‘eating for the planet’ by making a simple switch,” he continued. “That influential food brands like Burgrill are leading the charge in bringing plant-based meats to Indian consumers is a further sign of confidence in the sector, and that’s a major win for people and the planet.”
Lead image courtesy of Greenest / Burgrill.