Earlier this month, Burger King opened the doors to its very first fully vegan store. The fast-food chain has transformed its flagship Leicester Square location in central London and is now welcoming the public into an entirely renovated restaurant with a crucial change – the only items available to purchase will be vegan.
Having worked with Burger King since the launch of their Vegan Trademark certified Vegan Royale in 2020, a team from The Vegan Society were invited to their pre-launch event on Thursday 10th March, where we got to try exciting new menu items and chat to many of the people responsible for this pioneering project.
While the interior of the restaurant looks similar to any other Burger King restaurant, there were eye-catching differences that remind you this is unlike any other – from the redesigned green logo, to the green bench booth, to the ‘have it your way’ neon sign greeting you as you walk in. The location is full of fun, fresh design nods to the plant-based theme. The Vegan Society staff wanted to try a bit of everything so ordered, a Vegan Cheeeze & Bakon Royale, a Plant-based Bakon Double Cheeezeburger, a Plant-Based Whopper, Vegan Nuggets, and Vegan Chilli Cheeeze Bites, all of which came wrapped in green and white paper, while the packaging for the Vegan Royale meal included the Vegan Trademark. Everything at this location is suitable for vegans, however only the items that also meet our strict vegan standards at every location carry the Vegan Trademark.
One of the most noticeable things about the visit was the atmosphere. While the pop-up is open for a month, until 14th April, the team were fortunate enough to be there at a pre-launch event and the entire Burger King team were so enthusiastic and excited to open the doors, and introduce everyone to the tasty vegan food they were serving!
When a restaurant company built on selling meat products pledges to make 50% of their menu vegan by 2030, it is a clear indicator that there is a real drive and passion to create meaningful menu items that not only include vegan customers but excite them. Whilst retaining the quality and taste that the brand is synonymous with, they are developing an ever-expanding, innovative menu of vegan alternatives to their well-loved classics. From chilli cheeeze bites and bakon and cheeeze extras to perfect alternatives to favourites like the Vegan Royale, there is a wide and varied menu full of options that both vegans and meat-reducers will love.
While on site, Ericka Durgahee, our resident Marketing Manager, said: “Burger King have started what is a true partnership with the team at the Vegan Trademark. They really consider how vegan options impact their supply chains, their in-house teams, and most importantly, their customers. It’s been such a successful partnership and we were honoured to catch up with them at the pre-launch event and get to experience a fully vegan Burger King menu! I look forward to seeing the enormous success of this trial here in the UK and recommend all vegans – and those plant-curious amongst you – to go and give it a visit.”
Standing in the UK’s first meat-free Burger King, reminds us just how far veganism has come in the last 5-10 years. Interest and excitement around veganism isn’t showing any signs of slowing down and we’re looking forward to what comes next.
To be kept up to date with all Burger King news, and announcements from other Vegan Trademark holders, be sure to follow @vegantrademark on Instagram where you’ll also find top tips and guides for going vegan.
Make sure to check out the month-long Vegan Burger King pop-up, in London’s Leicester Square, running from 14th March-14th April.
The views expressed by our bloggers are not necessarily the views of The Vegan Society.