Categories
Fast Food Plant-Based Sustainability

KFC’s Beyond Fried Chicken Comes To Socal For A Limited Run

After a brief introduction to KFC’s Beyond Fried Chicken last year, the plant-based poultry is getting an expanded test run across Southern California.

Beyond Fried Chicken photos courtesy of KFC. Background by Maxime Lebrun on Unsplash.

Starting July 20th, Beyond Meat’s collab with KFC will be available for a limited time at 59 locations across Southern California. The restaurants are located in Los Angeles, Orange, and San Diego Counties.

For those unfamiliar, the Beyond Fried Chicken offering consists of nuggets made from a plant-based chicken breast substitute that Beyond Meat has developed. Seasoned like KFC’s fried chicken, it’s sold in a 6-piece or 12-piece order, with combo options available as well. All of these come with your choice of dipping sauce.

The SoCal regional offering marks the third time Beyond Fried Chicken has been made available, suggesting that KFC is looking to ramp this up to a national scale some time in the near future. It first showed up in Atlanta in August 2019, followed by a test offering in February 2020 in Nashville and Charlotte.

Considering its debut in Atlanta drew hour-long lines, there’s definitely a growing appetite for the nuggets that the chain could capitalize on.

Below is a list of all of the locations you can find the plant-based chicken at starting on the 20th:

Categories
Fast Food Science Sustainability

Burger King Starts Serving Whoppers Using Beef With Reduced Methane Emissions

Over the past few years, switching to meat alternatives has grown in popularity as folks look to eat less meat for environmental reasons. One of the biggest environmental concerns is the greenhouse gas emissions that livestock production gives off, roughly 65% of which comes from beef, according to the Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations (FAO).

People still want to eat meat, though, and research has begun to take shape in how meat production could reduce its own emissions. Some of that research has made its way to Burger King, who is now using it to make “Reduced Methane Emissions Beef” for some of its Whoppers.

Photo courtesy of Burger King

Burger King’s new beef comes from research that herbs like lemongrass can be used to reduce the amount of emissions that come from enteric fermentation. This means that in cow’s stomachs, different kinds of bacteria can ferment what they eat into gases that include methane, and by changing around a cow’s diet, you could reduce some of the methane these gut bacteria produce.

Burger King discussed its own test data related to emissions in a press release, which claims that adding 100 grams of lemongrass to cow’s diets helps them release less methane as they digest food. BK’s Reduced Methane Emissions Beef goes on this diet for three to four months prior to slaughter, which, according to Burger King, can lower methane emissions by an average of 33% per day.

Burger King’s own research was conducted in tandem with the Autonomous University of the State of Mexico and U.C. Davis. An independent 2013 study from the Asian-Australasian Journal of Animal Sciences found lemongrass to be effective, but lemongrass in conjunction with supplemental herbs and spices like garlic powder and peppermint could possibly lower emissions even more.

Burger King is taking a big step forward, though, in introducing this kind of beef in its locations, as well as trying to reduce the carbon footprint of its burger production.

Right now, you can get Reduced Methane Emissions Beef Whoppers at select locations in Miami, New York, Austin, Portland, and Los Angeles while supplies last.

Categories
Alcohol Sustainability

Johnnie Walker Launching Sleek And Sustainable Paper Bottle Next Year

Photo: Diageo

Next year, expect more and more spirits to go completely plastic-free as many companies are transitioning to sustainable paper spirit bottles.

Diageo, the makers of Johnnie Walker, Smirnoff and Guinness have just announced that they’ve created the first-ever 100% plastic-free paper bottle to house spirits.

The new bottle is made from sustainably sourced wood and will make its inaugural debut with Johnnie Walker Scotch Whisky in the early half of 2021.

This launch coincides with Diageo’s new partnership with venture management company Pilot Lite to launch a new sustainable packaging technology company called Pulpex Limited.

These new Pulpex bottles boast ‘first-of-its-kind’ scalability that’s designed to be 100% plastic-free and fully recyclable. Pulpex Limited will also kick off a partnership consortium of fast-moving consumer goods companies that include Unilever and PepsiCo. These companies are also expected to launch their own branded paper bottles based off Pulpex’s designs and tech.

Categories
Entrepreneurship Food Trends Health Sustainability

Salmon Skin Chips Are Here, Would You Try Them?

goodfish

Growing up, pork rinds were a popular snack. My mother, vehemently anti-pork, would never buy them, but on a rare occasion, I’d steal a munch from a relative or friend. Even now, I recall the salty crunch, and how quick they mysteriously evaporate in your mouth. Those are good memories, yet with age, I became more conscious of my diet and as a result, haven’t had a chicharron in years. With that said, pork skins are still wildly popular. 

In today’s “alternative world,” social media has spurred entrepreneurship which in turn has fueled innovation across industries. As health consciousness grows and alternative “everything’s” are popping up weekly, a pork rind alternative was inevitable. 

goodfish

New upstart snack brand Goodfish is that answer. It’s the aquatic alternative to pork rinds and is made with wild caught Alaskan Salmon from Bristol Bay. These fish skins are packed with clean protein, good omega fats and marine collagen. Goodfish aims to give you all the nutrients, with none of the sluggishness carbs cause. They come in four flavors; Sea Salt, Spicy BBQ, Chili Lime and the oddly curious Tart Cranberry. 

I don’t know about ya’ll, but these sound pretty fire to me. They have a lighter crisp but still deliver on the salty savoriness. I can’t call the tart cranberry though. Would you try these as a healthier alternative to pork rinds? Possibly a replacement?  

If you’re interested in doing a deep dive, you can find Goodfish at your local retailer here.

Categories
Fast Food News Plant-Based Sustainability What's New

KFC Will Be Selling Plant-Based Chicken Nuggets In China Next Week

On Monday, KFC announced that it will be selling vegan chicken nuggets in China from April 28 to April 30, as it continues its expansion into the plant-based market.

The fast food giant said that the nuggets will be sold in Shanghai, Shenzhen, and Guangzhou, and will be manufactured by Cargill Ltd. 

This comes after extremely successful plant-based product testing in multiple countries, which showed enough consumer demand to expand the dishes into more locations in the US. Notably, the company is using a different manufacturer for the Chinese launch, as they tapped Beyond Meat in the US and Lightlife in Canada, respectively.

This isn’t the only way in which the brand’s Chinese release differs. Customers will have to purchase a pre-sale voucher for 1.99 yuan that entitles them to five chicken pieces, according to the company’s official Weibo account. 

This is an interesting path to take, as KFC surely looks to avoid the expansive line that occurred during the high profile Atlanta launch of the company’s plant-based fried chicken. It’s reminiscent of the pre-sale lotteries and raffles that many sneaker companies have done to avoid real-life lines and online crashes during hyped shoe releases. 

We’ll surely be keeping our eyes peeled for any visuals of the new nuggets, as well as any potential plant-based nugget voucher resale market, so check back soon.

Categories
Restaurants Sustainability

Is Food Delivery Sustainable During A Recession?

Everyone’s home. Everyone’s either cooking or ordering takeout. This is the reality we’re living in thanks to the infectious disease known as the coronavirus.

In a recent episode of the Foodbeast Katchup podcast, host Geoffrey Kutnick and Foodbeast managing editor, Reach Guinto, had a conversation with the editor-in-chief of Restaurant Business Magazine Jonathan Maze about the state of food and restaurants during the time of Covid-19.

With people essentially ordered to stay at home to prevent the spread of the virus, Kutnick posed the question, “What is the value of these delivery apps?”

“Delivery is a lot of what restaurants have,” Maze said speaking to the current state of restaurants during this “stay at home” mandate. “They don’t have anything besides delivery and take-out. So they’re going to have to survive on it. For delivery apps, this is their time to shine — their ability to continue to serve a lot more customers to get a much greater share. To get consumers onto their platform, it’s going to be really important for them.”

Maze, however, voiced a concern for delivery services in the months and even years ahead.

“I tend to have a longterm concern with delivery apps overall, simply because I think it’s expensive,” he said. “When I’ve gone to delivery and I’ve compared to what it would cost if I just went and ordered at the restaurant directly rather than through one of the third-party apps, especially if you’re not a jerk and you tip them.”

You’re going to spend a 70-75% premium on that order, if not more. That’s expensive.

Maze says when everything clears up, we’re going to be in a recession, and it’s going to be a while before the economy recovers from that.

“You get into a situation where people are really cutting back. Are they going to spend that kind of premium when they’re cutting back and everything? That’s a legitimate question down the line.”

Maze isn’t alone in this belief. Trevor Broomstra, director of AlixPartners restaurants and hospitality services told CNBC that restaurants should be wary of leaning too heavily on delivery sales. The December 2019 article hauntingly mentions that if the economy were to slow down, consumers would have less disposable income to spend on delivery fees.

In the short term, however, Maze says it’s a certainly benefit. Delivery apps will definitely play a role and restaurants need them. Especially in the immediate weeks to come.

Categories
Design Sustainability Technology

A Campfire Meal Is Possible On This Zero-Emissions Motorbike

CAKE, a Swedish based manufacturer of electric off-road motorbikes, has revealed their latest zero emissions creation, ÖSA. It’s dubbed, “the first clean and efficient commuter vessel with an integrated power station and off-road capabilities.”

It comes equipped with a battery strong enough to serve any remote desires one could have, multiple outlets, a cutting board grade workbench, attachments for pots or pans, and front-wheel basket space for additional supplies. This makes it perfect for catering, road trip pit-stops, picnics or outings with friends & family.  

Over the past few years the transportation industry has begun shifting more towards electric power as combustion vehicles are fast-becoming antiquated. Mobile pollution reportedly contributes 20% to global carbon monoxide emissions and many major cities are considering banning cars within the city center. Furthermore, train systems are expanding and scooters are scooting. Aware of those facts, CAKE’s motorbikes are keenly designed with a focus on environmental responsibility. Their mission statement further elaborates:

CAKE’s mission is to inspire towards a zero-emission society, combining excitement with responsibility. All components are made from scratch to optimize the riding performance in this new category. Every little detail is elaborated for perfection, while considering the perspectives of sustainability. It’s all about the outdoors. Explore with respect.”

Aside from catering, the ÖSA motorbike is expansively dynamic and can be used for any type of off-grid work like carpentry, gardening, postal services, and even DJ’s can take it for a spin. The modular design allows you to customize your purchase to suit your needs.   

If you wanna join the ride towards a zero-emissions future, the ÖSA is now available for order through CAKE’s website.

Categories
Drinks Sustainability

Straw Stars: A Straw Alternative Power Ranking

Last week, Foodbeast’s lead TikTokker/editor-in-chief Elie Ayrouth posted a video of an enormous, 1-pound bag of boba milk tea. Why exactly this product exists, I do not know. But, what I do know is that one of my favorite reactions to the video was a comment that asked him not about the boba, but about the environmental ethics behind his consumption of said gluttonous bag of tea. More specifically, the plastic straw he used was in question. 

Now, I’m all for not using plastic. You’re talking to the person who used to force his coffeeshop coworkers to use glass cups with no straws while at work. But, if you see a bag of boba big enough to give someone a concussion should a fight come its way, and the first thing you think of is how wasteful the straw usage is, you might be on a path towards being overkill. 

Anyways, as the Foodbeast editorial team sat in our meeting room and discussed this comment during our weekly meeting, we started to wonder: what ARE the best straw alternatives? Besides coming to a communal agreement that paper straws would be better off staying a tree, the results were varied. But, after much deliberation, here we have it, a power ranking of straws:

10. Biodegradable Plastic Straws

Photo by: Christopher on Pexels

Ideally, biodegradable plastic straws would be the answer to all our problems, and would make this list irrelevant. But, like anything that sounds too good to be true, it is. These types of straws are only biodegradable in certain, commercial compost facilities, meaning you have to dispose of them in a way that definitely doesn’t include tossing it away with your iced coffee before you enter work, a fate similar to that of most of our straws.

9. Pasta Straws

Photo by: Pixabay on Plexels

Pasta straws are indeed highly functional, but they’re still single use and are ruined after an hour’s time. Pass. 

8. Silicone Straws

Photo by: frank mckenna on Unsplash

Silicone straws are flexible, easy to clean, and heavily reusable. The only problem is most lend a distinct taste to any drink they’re served in. No flavor compliments everything you drink quite like an undertone of rubber, right?

7. Paper Straws

Photo by: Vlad Chețan on Pexels

Personally, I have no qualms with most paper straws. In my experience, most paper straws take over an hour until they start becoming flimsy. But, alas, it seems as if the general consensus is that paper straws become soaked and useless after a couple minutes in liquid and have a weird “lip feel.”

6. Hay Straws

Photo by: Pixabay on Pexels

Surprisingly, straws are named after straw. Like, the stuff in hay bales. More surprisingly, there are companies selling straw straws. From my research, it seems as if they work well, too. The issue is that it’s difficult to produce a consistent product, as each stalk of straw grows to a different diameter. Until these are able to be mass produced, they’ll stay in the middle of the pack (hay bale, if you will).

5. No Straw

Photo by: Daria Shevtsova on Pexels

This would be higher up if it wasn’t for the active lifestyle that most people live. For sitting down at a meal, or kicking it at a coffee shop, no straw is the best straw. But, the moment you have to take a drink to go, choosing to go no straw turns your commute into a perilous mission.

4. Glass Straws

Photo by: Giorgio Trovato on Unsplash

By all means, glass straws work great. Easy to clean, cheap, and essentially acting as an additional part to the glass you’re drinking out of, glass straws are amongst the best straw alternative options. But, while many glass straws are indeed tough, the off chance that a glass straw shatters in your bag, backpack, or drink brings it’s ranking down.

3. Sippy Lid

Photo by: Daria Shevtsova on Pexels

It’s like no straw, but with some protection from the elements. The only issue is that some people don’t feel right drinking things without a straw, apparently. For me, this is not an issue. But, hey, if you absolutely need a straw, who am I to judge?

2. Bamboo Straws

Photo by: Artem Beliaikin on Pexels

Sustainable, economical, smooth on the lips, and resistant to soaking, bamboo straws are about as good as it gets. The only downside is that they do eventually wear out, which brings them down to second on our list. But, on the bright side, it’s a stick. You can properly dispose of these straws by simply tossing it in the dirt. 

1. Stainless Steel Straw

Photo by: Louise Burton on Unsplash

There’s really no downside to stainless steel straws. They’re hard to break, easily cleaned, not too expensive, and some come with silicone tips to give an improved lip feel. If you’re going to use a straw alternative (you should), this is the Foodbeast approved answer.