McDonald’s in Finland and Sweden are showing strong sales of a new plant-based burger, which reflects a larger global demand for animal-free fast food.
McDonald’s locations across Finland and Sweden sold 150,000 of its McVegan burgers in January. Peter Ruzicka, CEO of Orkla Foods—the company that helped McDonald’s develop the soy-based patty for the McVegan—revealed that demand for the plant-based burger is strong in the Nordic region. “People want to eat more plant-based food,” Ruzicka told Foodnavigator, “partly for health reasons, but also because of environmental reasons.” Ruzicka believes customers understand how plant-based foods are more eco-friendly, stating that the McVegan has “less climate impact than a regular burger made of meat.” McDonald’s first launched the McVegan at a single location in Tampere, Finland in October last year before expanding the vegan menu option across its locations in Finland and Sweden in December. Ruzicka explained that favorable sales of the McVegan in the Nordic region reflect a larger dietary shift. “This has received a lot of attention worldwide,” Ruzicka said. “This is a trend, of course, not only in the Nordics.” As McDonald’s is a franchise, regional management is responsible for adding new menu items such as the McVegan.
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