Dunkin’ is the latest fast food chain to pick up on the vegan meat alternative from food tech company Beyond Meat. The donut and breakfast food chain rolled out a new sausage breakfast sandwich at all of its Manhattan locations that uses no meat at all. Instead, the meat is made from Beyond Meat’s vegan meat alternative that’s taken the food industry by storm over the last year. The company recently filed an IPO as it announced plans to expand into major fast food chains around the nation. Dunkin’ is just the latest in its plan to replace much of the lower quality meat in the food industry.
Dunkin’ Donuts announced that it would be rebranding nearly a year ago. The company realized that it would need to change its menu and branding in order to attract a millennial consumer base. Millennial consumers, more than their parents apparently, are hyper-focused on healthy eating habits and specialized diets. A diet that consists of donuts for breakfast would not cut it in the long run, so Dunkin’ needed to rebrand. Thus, a name change was in order. Because changing your name to Dunkin’ Purveyors of Healthy Breakfast Sandwiches doesn’t quite roll of the tongue in the same way that Dunkin’ Donuts did, so the company ditched the donuts and just stuck with something simple and familiar: Dunkin’.
The company’s decision to create a Beyond Meat sausage breakfast sandwich wasn’t necessarily to attract a strictly vegan consumer base, though. Consumers of Beyond Meat are often not abandoning meat altogether, but choosing it in situations where it’s available as a meat alternative. Experts suggest that the global meat alternative industry is going to exceed $140 billion in the next decade. Meanwhile, consumers are choosing to go meatless more often as a way of cutting back on their carbon footprint while also making healthy decisions.
Today, Dunkin’s menu offers more healthy options than it did before. The menu also cut back on its options for donuts, though consumers don’t seem to mind. Instead, customers will find a menu full of healthier breakfast options at a fast-food pace. Things like egg whites and whole grains replace bagels and fattening breakfast sandwiches. Dunkin’s focus has also started to lean more toward coffee than ever before, putting it in competition with brands like Starbucks instead of Krispy Kreme.
Beyond Meat Takes Over Fast Food Industry
Aside from the fact that you’ll probably find Beyond Meat patties in the meat section of your local grocery store these days, Beyond Meat has also been working to offer its product in many of the fast food chains around the country. The meat alternative company was founded back in 2010, but the product didn’t hit really take off until 2013. Even then, it took a couple of years to really pick up, but now—in 2019—it’s virtually everywhere. The patties are made from pea and rice protein isolates and look and taste like real meat. The company filed its IPO earlier this year, and has since gained a bigger valuation.
The Beyond Meat sausage breakfast sandwich (which is not vegan, because it still contains egg and cheese) is now available in Dunkin’ locations throughout Manhattan for just $4.29, but will roll out in other locations around the country at a later date. The sandwich is expected to take customers from other chains like Taco Bell and McDonald’s.