KFC just launched a plant-based chicken sandwich in the UK


By Chase Purdy, Quartz

January 6, 2020


The world’s most iconic fast food chicken chain this week (Jan. 6) announced the release of a new vegan chicken sandwich across the some 900 locations it operates in the United Kingdom. It’s calling the menu item the ‘Zero Chicken’ sandwich.


Quorn products are generally based on an ingredient called mycoprotein, which is derived from a fungus that is dried and then bound together with egg albumen or a vegan potato protein. In this case, the Quorn chicken product is seasoned with KFC’s own herb and spice mixtures.


New, plant-based offerings are popping up in fast-food restaurants, but they’ve largely been in burger form. There are very few vegan chicken options in the fast-food market, making this new sandwich a particularly timely addition—especially as a so-called chicken sandwich war broke out (paywall) in the US between Popeye’s, Chick-fil-a, and other fast-food chains.


Does a vegan offering stand a chance in that fight? At least for now, it appears it’ll remain an ocean away from the fray. If it performs well, KFC may begin testing a sandwich in other markets, including the US. And while Quorn is not the top name in plant-based meat alternatives—consumers are more likely familiar with Beyond Meat and Impossible Foods—it isn’t a small player. In 2018, it brought in some $31 million, reflecting about 19% in year-on-year growth...


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