KFC will launch meatless fried chicken made with Beyond Meat across the country

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KFC’s new beyond fried chicken

KFC

Starting from Monday, KFC restaurants across the country will add Beyond Meat’s meatless chicken to their menus for a limited time.

After years of testing by the Yum brand chain stores and Beyond, the product was launched nationwide to create a meat substitute that mimics the taste and texture of full muscle chicken (such as chicken breast). The two companies first tested plant-based chicken in a restaurant in Atlanta in August 2019 and it sold out in less than five hours. In 2020, customers in Nashville, Charlotte, and Southern California began to try the product.

About a year ago, Beyond announced a formal partnership with Yum to produce exclusive meat substitutes for Pizza Hut, Taco Bell and KFC.

Seek more growth

As Wall Street began to doubt its growth prospects, Beyond’s stock price has been struggling. In the past 12 months, the stock price has fallen by half, dragging the company’s market value to $3.9 billion. According to Factset’s data, the stock closed down 5% to $61.62 on Tuesday, and short sellers accounted for 37.2% of the available stock.

On the other hand, Yum’s stock price rose by 30% last year, bringing its market value to US$40.3 billion. Strong demand for KFC fried chicken helped push up the stock price. The chain’s US same-store sales increased by 13% in two years in the third quarter.

But the fried chicken chain believes that customers will want something different to fulfill their New Year’s wishes.

Kevin Hawkman, president of KFC USA, said: “It’s actually about where customers are going and they want to eat more plant-based protein.” Do different things in your diet.”

Chipotle Mexican Grill launched plant-based sausages in its restaurants nationwide on Monday-also for customers who are trying to eat less meat in 2022.

Customers can purchase 6 or 12 pieces of KFC Beyond Fried Chicken, including dipping sauce. Prices start at $6.99, excluding tax.

In order to prepare for the launch of new products in the new year, Beyond hired industry veterans from Tyson Foods to serve as its C suite in December, appointed Dougramy as chief operating officer, and Bernie Adcock as chief supply chain The new role of the officer. Ramsey worked for Tyson for three years, overseeing its poultry and McDonald’s businesses. Adcock also worked at Tyson for 30 years, focusing on operations and supply chain management.

“We will continue to grow the operations team, and they have done a lot of work to help the team prepare in the final days,” said Beyond Meat CEO Ethan Brown, adding that the partnership with KFC was not achieved overnight, but for many years. Is in production. “They helped us prepare for this. I think we have brought in some senior managers in the industry.”

Synergy with retail

The new product offers an opportunity to bring customers into its grocery business, which was initially boosted by pantry loading in the early stages of the pandemic, but declined in subsequent quarters.

“It has a great synergy with what we are doing in the retail industry,” Brown said.

To promote the new menu items, YouTube star Liza Koshy will appear in an advertising campaign for meatless chicken in the latest collaboration between fast food chains and influencers. However, KFC’s marketing will not directly target vegetarians and vegetarians, because Beyond Fried Chicken is made using the same equipment as KFC traditional fried chicken.

“It’s really important to make it easy for team members to get started,” Hochman said.

Last year, the nationwide labor contraction took a heavy toll on restaurants, and many restaurants were understaffed. In order to run smoothly even with fewer workers, some chain stores have been reluctant to add new items or even reduce their menus. The surge in new Covid-19 cases has exacerbated these problems as workers screamed because they tested positive or were exposed.

Although the launch came at a time when omicron variants surged across the country, both Hochman and Brown were optimistic about the product. More and more Americans are adopting the so-called flexible diet, and consumers are reducing their meat consumption for health and environmental reasons. This has promoted the popularity of plant-based meat substitutes to a certain extent.

“From a supply point of view, we feel very good about this. This is our experience in the preliminary trials,” Brown said.


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