23 votes

McDonald's is testing the 'McPlant' burger in Denmark and Sweden – burger features a patty made from pea and rice proteins, which was co-developed with Beyond Meat

18 comments

  1. [17]
    Grzmot
    Link
    McDonald's burgers are so loveless and the patty so thin that I'm pretty sure exchanging the two would make no difference at all. The amount of meat that McDonald's uses is probably insane so I'm...

    McDonald's burgers are so loveless and the patty so thin that I'm pretty sure exchanging the two would make no difference at all. The amount of meat that McDonald's uses is probably insane so I'm sure it'd would be a good thing with actual scale.

    9 votes
    1. [16]
      acdw
      (edited )
      Link Parent
      I actually think that's a good reason to switch to plant-based burgers for a lot of fast-food. It's not like the quality is the selling point; McD's (and BK, and others) sell burgers because...

      I actually think that's a good reason to switch to plant-based burgers for a lot of fast-food. It's not like the quality is the selling point; McD's (and BK, and others) sell burgers because they're cheap and okay enough to eat on the go. Just make 'em out of plants, and honestly hardly anyone would notice. This isn't true, see my comment below.

      Or that's how it should be, but meat culture and its trappings in machismo, etc. prevent it.

      12 votes
      1. [2]
        kfwyre
        Link Parent
        There’s a Burger King on my way home from work, and in pre-COVID times I was definitely guilty of stopping by after a tough day for an easy meal more times than I’d like to admit. Once they...

        There’s a Burger King on my way home from work, and in pre-COVID times I was definitely guilty of stopping by after a tough day for an easy meal more times than I’d like to admit. Once they started serving Impossible Whoppers I started ordering those and was happy enough with them to never look back. I genuinely like them, and not just in a “this is alright for a meat substitute” kind of way but in a “this hits the spot for a fast food burger craving” kind of way.

        The machismo aspect is definitely still a big hurdle for many, but my hope is that the convenience of such an easy swap will also pay off for many too. It already has for me — I haven’t ordered a meat Whopper since they started offering Impossible ones.

        11 votes
        1. acdw
          Link Parent
          Me too --- they're so delicious, now I have to try not to eat BK because you know, it's still bad for you, instead of just, it's meat!

          I genuinely like them, and not just in a “this is alright for a meat substitute” kind of way but in a “this hits the spot for a fast food burger craving” kind of way.

          Me too --- they're so delicious, now I have to try not to eat BK because you know, it's still bad for you, instead of just, it's meat!

          5 votes
      2. [6]
        Wes
        Link Parent
        For the moment, meat substitutes seem to be more premium options than meat. It costs almost twice as much for the "ground beef" equivalent. I expect as the economies of scale take over though, it...

        For the moment, meat substitutes seem to be more premium options than meat. It costs almost twice as much for the "ground beef" equivalent.

        I expect as the economies of scale take over though, it will begin to tip in the other direction. And thank goodness for that.

        10 votes
        1. [5]
          acdw
          Link Parent
          Yeah, I hope so --- I was burned by this a while ago when I thought I had a coupon, but it didn't apply for the veg version. It was really frustrating. The other thing to remember is that meat is...

          Yeah, I hope so --- I was burned by this a while ago when I thought I had a coupon, but it didn't apply for the veg version. It was really frustrating.

          The other thing to remember is that meat is subsidized by the USDA (obviously in America -- not sure elsewhere), so the price is artificially low. If the real free market were to apply, I think veg would be much more plentiful.

          8 votes
          1. [4]
            MimicSquid
            Link Parent
            Meat is subsidized, but so are almost all other staple foods. Food is one area where the hand of the free market is a little trembly for anyone to trust.

            Meat is subsidized, but so are almost all other staple foods. Food is one area where the hand of the free market is a little trembly for anyone to trust.

            6 votes
            1. [3]
              acdw
              Link Parent
              Hmm, fair enough. I just wish they'd stop subsidizing meat ... :P

              Hmm, fair enough. I just wish they'd stop subsidizing meat ... :P

              2 votes
              1. MimicSquid
                Link Parent
                Totally, and I'm with you on that. I just wanted to provide broader context.

                Totally, and I'm with you on that. I just wanted to provide broader context.

                3 votes
              2. [2]
                Comment deleted by author
                Link Parent
                1. acdw
                  Link Parent
                  Oh for sure, for sure. America is Meat Town, no question about that. It'd be nice tho!

                  Oh for sure, for sure. America is Meat Town, no question about that. It'd be nice tho!

                  2 votes
      3. [2]
        teaearlgraycold
        Link Parent
        I feel like the chicken nuggets from various fast food chains are the easiest to replace with a plant substitute. The texture isn't far off from tofu anyway. A little texture/flavor R&D and they...

        I feel like the chicken nuggets from various fast food chains are the easiest to replace with a plant substitute. The texture isn't far off from tofu anyway. A little texture/flavor R&D and they could remove animals from those products.

        7 votes
        1. acdw
          Link Parent
          I would love a chicken nugget fast food option for veggies. Frozen ones from supermarkets are quite good.

          I would love a chicken nugget fast food option for veggies. Frozen ones from supermarkets are quite good.

          5 votes
      4. [3]
        Good_Apollo
        Link Parent
        It’s annoying to see not liking this “meat replacement” chalked up to machismo or some sort of meat culture. I like meat, there I said it. Even cheap shitty meat like what’s served at fast food....

        It’s annoying to see not liking this “meat replacement” chalked up to machismo or some sort of meat culture. I like meat, there I said it. Even cheap shitty meat like what’s served at fast food. Now I’m not some sort of weirdo opposed to cutting down on meat consumption but “replacements” these are not. I’ve had some good veggie burgers and “fake” meat products and they’re fine (black bean derivatives being my favorite) but no I am not fooled by these beyond products. The texture and taste is nothing like meat and I seriously question the bias of people who say they don’t notice a difference.

        I’m far more interested in the lab grown stuff as an actual replacement for factory farming of live animals.

        7 votes
        1. cfabbro
          (edited )
          Link Parent
          I agree that chalking meat eating entirely up to machismo is rather reductive and unproductive, but have you ever actually had a McD's burger completely plain (i.e. without toppings, or a bun)...

          I agree that chalking meat eating entirely up to machismo is rather reductive and unproductive, but have you ever actually had a McD's burger completely plain (i.e. without toppings, or a bun) before?

          I have, because I was curious what it would look/taste like, and they're surprisingly not very meat-like to begin with. They're a really, really strange sponge-like texture, unexpectedly dry but somehow still greasy at the same time, taste mostly of salt, and are a remarkably unappealing greyish light-brown colour. Whereas Beyond Burgers, which I have also had completely plain, actually have a much more meat-like texture and appealing meat-like colour than them, and are much juicer without being greasy. And while the difference between the two in terms of taste is noticeable when eaten plain, IMO it's hard to actually notice that difference once you include a bun and all the typical burger toppings/condiments.

          p.s. I am super excited at the possibility of ethical, lab-grown meat too though, since I think that has more potential to change the world for the better than any plant-based meat substitute ever could.

          7 votes
        2. acdw
          Link Parent
          Shit, I did say nobody would notice -- honestly, I shouldn't have, and I know this from personal experience. One time I ordered an impossible whopper and they gave me a regular one, and I knew one...

          I am not fooled by these beyond products. The texture and taste is nothing like meat and I seriously question the bias of people who say they don’t notice a difference.

          Shit, I did say nobody would notice -- honestly, I shouldn't have, and I know this from personal experience. One time I ordered an impossible whopper and they gave me a regular one, and I knew one bite in, so -- sorry about that, it was not helpful to the conversation. (I'll edit that to point to this)

          You're absolutely right that plant burgers/etc. taste different. In my opinion, better, but that's opinion. I'm honestly just happy fast food places are getting into plant stuff because I, too, love a good shitty fast-food burger.

          I don't know where I'm going with this, so. But I agree that lab-grown is great, veg is great, I think both is great. There's just so many reasons to not factory-farm animals, I want it to be over.

          Re: machismo -- maybe you're right. It seems like it to me that a lot of the cultural conversation around meat is machismo-related, regardless of you in particular. Like, I'm not saying you're some macho meathead whatever, but I do think companies like Arby's, etc. use the language of macho-ness to sell meat.

          5 votes
      5. [2]
        Akir
        Link Parent
        This seems like a really good idea, honestly. McDonalds hamburgers in particular lack the flavor of beef (somehow), so replacing them with plants makes sense, especially if they use plants like...

        This seems like a really good idea, honestly. McDonalds hamburgers in particular lack the flavor of beef (somehow), so replacing them with plants makes sense, especially if they use plants like pepper, cumin, or basil.

        Honestly, I think McDonalds would be pretty awesome if one of the options was just falaffel on a pita with any number of yogurt-based sauce offerings. You wouldn't even have to wait for 'fake meat technology' to catch up.

        5 votes
        1. acdw
          Link Parent
          omg YES please!!! that sounds so good -- in India I think they have a McVeggie which is like you say, and apparently it's delicious.

          omg YES please!!! that sounds so good -- in India I think they have a McVeggie which is like you say, and apparently it's delicious.

          3 votes
  2. Keegan
    Link
    My university just got one of the name brand meat substitutes in one of the small fast food chains that has a location on campus. It’s only like a dollar or two upcharge (which isn’t too bad) to...

    My university just got one of the name brand meat substitutes in one of the small fast food chains that has a location on campus. It’s only like a dollar or two upcharge (which isn’t too bad) to get, and tastes great.

    They’ve got substitutes for chicken tenders, burgers, chicken patties, and more, which is honestly awesome. I could not tell the difference for the tenders.

    Our university didn’t have many options for vegetarian/vegan students before and this is a great change for them, as they were getting bored of having salads. I’m surprised it took so long though. For the sample size of 25 in my dorm (smallest on campus), 3 people are vegetarian/vegan, so it isn’t a terribly insignificant amount of people in demand for such options.

    9 votes