Arby's Won't be Adding Plant-based Burgers to its Menu

While other fast food brands like White Castle and Burger King are embracing plant-based burgers, Arby's will not be jumping on the veggie-burger bandwagon.

After "VegNews" mentioned that Arby’s was one of the many chains to reach out to Impossible Foods, a popular plant-based company that has partnered with restaurants across the country to serve its Impossible Burger, the fast food giant issued a statement making it clear that veggie-burgers won't be added to Arby's menu.

“Contrary to reports this week, Arby’s is not one of the restaurant companies interested in working with Impossible Foods,” said Arby’s in a statement. “The chances we will bring plant-based menu items to our restaurants, now or in the future, are absolutely impossible.”

Although it may be a controversial decision considering plant-based diets are becoming more popular, Arby's marketing campaigns are centered around its real juicy meat. The chain's slogan is “We Have the Meats" with TV Spots showcasing its meat stacked sandwiches like its"Bacon 'n Brisket Beef 'n Cheddar" sandwich.

"As reported by outlets like Adweek and Fortune, Arby’s “We Have the Meats” campaign has been credited with sparking a major turnaround for the brand. It’s easy to see why they wouldn’t want to undermine that message and, instead, decided to use this as a chance to double-down on something that’s been working," writes "Food & Wine."

But the brand doesn't seem opposed to incorporating less popular meat on the menu. As "Food & Wine" points out, Arby’s has rolled out venison nationwide and has also served duck and elk sandwiches in the past.

So will this decision backfire for the chain? Or is it admirable that Arby's is embracing why most of the guests visit the chain in the first place?

Read more about Arby's statement at "Food & Wine" now.

At the end of 2017, Roark Capital, the parent company of Arby's, purchased Buffalo Wild Wings. Arby's, which completed one of the most successful marketing comebacks meat-focused brands in 2016 is expected to revamp Buffalo Wild Wings, a casual dining chain that has struggled in recent years. Learn more about the acquisition in the video below.

The Plant-based Impossible Burger has a New Gluten-Free Recipe

As the battle of the plant-based burgers continues, one of the front runners the Impossible Burger is introducing a new formulation to cater to more eaters with dietary restrictions.

The veggie burger's new recipe is now gluten-free after the company decided to switch out the wheat protein for a soy protein concentrate. The patty also has no animal hormones or antibiotics either, along with less salt.

The Impossible Burger by Impossible Foods is a plant-based burger that debuted in 2016. It looks so much like the traditional beef burger that it even bleeds.

It has been quickly added to the menus of restaurants across the country, including White Castle.

Although the company's previous formulation was a hit with the masses, including non-vegetarians and vegans, the company decided to change the recipe for a few reasons.

"Impossible Burger fans told us loud and clear they wanted a gluten-free burger that was at least as nutritious as meat from animals,” said David Lee, COO and CFO of Impossible Foods in a statement. "Our new product delivers all the taste meat lovers crave — without compromise to nutrition or the planet."

Not only did the company listen to feedback from the customers, but the new recipe makes the product more adaptable and can be substituted for ground meat. The former patty, on the other hand, was intended for mainly flat-top cooking.

The new recipe Impossible Burger will be available for retail later this year.

Read more about Impossible Foods latest change at "Food Dive."

As we said, veggie-burger companies have been battling it out to capture more of the market share. According to recent data from Nielsen, the sales in the plant-based market spiked by 20 percent over the last year.

We recently sat down with a competitor of Impossible Foods to discuss why plant-based foods have become so popular. Listen to the episode of The Barron Report below where Host Paul Barron talks with Ethan Brown, the CEO of Beyond Meat to learn more.

Beyond Meat Goes Public

A few weeks ago, there were rumors that the plant-based company Beyond Meat was planning to go public before the end of the year.

Well, these rumors ended up being true because last Friday, Beyond Meat filed an initial public offering for $100 million.

Beyond Meat reported $56.4 million in revenue for the first nine months of 2018, which is a 167 percent spike from last year.

"Going forward, we intend to continue to invest in innovation, supply chain capabilities, manufacturing and marketing initiatives," said the company in the filing.

The plant-based market is growing at a rapid rate as more consumers gravitate to a vegetarian or flexitarian lifestyle.

Plant-based consumption is up over 300 percent over the last year, according to our Foodable Labs data.

The Good Food Institute (GFI) has also released market data from Nielsen showing that the sales of this sector have recently exceeded $3.7 billion and that plant-based meat sales specifically have increased by 23 percent.

Beyond Meat was one the first companies to offer a vegan burger and quickly emerged as one of the biggest players in the plant-based protein market.

Besides being the first plant-based burger to be sold in the meat section at Whole Foods, the company has partnered with restaurants and food distributors across the country to get the Beyond Burger on more menus.

Beyond Meat has sold over 25 million veggie burgers that are "the closest thing to meat" ever created, boasts the company.

But the company has developed a product mimicking meat for a reason. Its target demographic aren't vegans and vegetarians, instead, it's flexitarians who may eat meat but choose not to often because of its environmental impact.

"Instead of marketing and merchandising The Beyond Burger to vegans and vegetarians (who represent less than 5% of the U.S. population), we request that the product be sold in the meat case at grocery retailers, where meat-loving consumers are accustomed to shopping for center-of-plate proteins," writes the company in the filing.

The Beyond Burger is now available in 11,000 grocery stores across the country.

Read more about Beyond Meat going public at "CNN."

Don’t miss The Barron Report episode below where Paul Barron goes into more detail about the plant-based company’s move to go public.

White Castle Expands the Impossible Slider to All Store Menus

Back in April, the fast food chain White Castle added the Impossible Slider, a plant-based mini burger to the menus of 140 of its chains in New York, New Jersey, and Chicago area.

In partnership with Impossible Foods, the chain has announced that it will be expanding the menu item nationwide.

The Impossible Burger has become wildly popular among vegetarians and flexitarians. The veggie burger that looks so much like the traditional beef burger that it even bleeds.

The ingredient soy leghemoglobin, which causes the burger to "bleed," is made from soybean plants. The ingredient got regulatory pushback from the Food and Drug Administration (F.D.A.) last August but was officially approved two months ago.

Impossible Foods, which has garnered over $250 million in investment, aims to bring veggie burgers to the fast food lovin' masses.

“White Castle’s model has been often imitated but never duplicated -- an impressive feat in the hypercompetitive fast-food sector,” said Patrick O. Brown, Impossible Foods’ Founder in the press release from April announcing the companies' partnership. “We look forward to working closely with White Castle, and together learning how to popularize plant-based meat with mainstream burger lovers.”

Evidently' White Castle's Impossible Slider test was well-received.

"Our Cravers definitely developed a hunger for the Impossible Slider," said Lisa Ingram, White Castle's CEO. "Sales easily exceeded our expectations."

The slider is topped with cheddar cheese, pickles, onion, and the White Castle signature 2-inch-squared bun.

But the Impossible Burger isn't the only veggie burger that "bleeds." Impossible Food's biggest rival, Beyond Meat also has a burger that bleeds, but this is merely just beet juice. Beyond Meat was the first plant-based burger to be sold in the meat section of grocery stores.

The good news is that there appears to be room for both of these plant-based companies. Plant-based consumption is up over 300 percent over the last year.

Learn all about the plant-based movement in the video below.

Read more about White Castle rolling out the Impossible Slider nationwide at "CNBC" now.