Beyond Meat Unveils Plant-Based Meat Options at KFC, Pizza Hut

Keerthi Vedantam

Keerthi Vedantam is a bioscience reporter at dot.LA. She cut her teeth covering everything from cloud computing to 5G in San Francisco and Seattle. Before she covered tech, Keerthi reported on tribal lands and congressional policy in Washington, D.C. Connect with her on Twitter, Clubhouse (@keerthivedantam) or Signal at 408-470-0776.

Beyond Meat Unveils Plant-Based Meat Options at KFC, Pizza Hut

Fast food chain KFC has unveiled its plant-based Beyond Fried Chicken in partnership with Beyond Meat—a sign of the fast food industry’s growing investment in vegetarian and vegan options.

The fast food chain began offering Beyond Fried Chicken nationwide on Monday, it said. The rollout arrives a year after Yum Brands, parent company of KFC and other fast food brands including Pizza Hut and Taco Bell, announced a partnership with the El Segundo-based food tech company. KFC claims it was the first national fast food chain to offer plant-based chicken in 2019, when it tested Beyond Fried Chicken at a location in Atlanta.

“The mission from day one was simple—make the world-famous Kentucky Fried Chicken from plants,” KFC U.S. president Kevin Hochman said in a statement. “And now over two years later we can say, ‘Mission accomplished.’”

Pizza Hut, meanwhile, said Monday that it is following KFC’s lead by giving Beyond Italian Sausage a permanent spot on its menus in Canada after trialing it last summer. Beyond Meat also announced a partnership with burger chain A&W last year that saw the chain roll out vegan chicken nuggets at its Canadian locations.

Beyond Meat has been in the business of creating texturally convincing fake meat since 2009. While the company has helped take plant-based meat mainstream, it hasn’t all been smooth sailing; Its first product, “chicken” strips made from a concoction of soy powder, carrot fiber and other plant ingredients, was phased out due to poor performance.

For all the hoopla around its embrace of plant-based meat, KFC noted that its Beyond Fried Chicken is not technically vegetarian or vegan—since it is prepared in the same fryers as its regular chicken and “may not be acceptable to certain types of vegetarian or vegan diets.”

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Bling Capital’s Kyle Lui On How Small Funds Can Better Support Young Founders

Minnie Ingersoll
Minnie Ingersoll is a partner at TenOneTen and host of the LA Venture podcast. Prior to TenOneTen, Minnie was the COO and co-founder of $100M+, an online marketplace for used cars. Minnie started her career as an early product manager at Google. Minnie studied Computer Science at Stanford and has an MBA from HBS. She recently moved back to L.A. after 20+ years in the Bay Area and is excited to be a part of the growing tech ecosystem of Southern California. In her space time, Minnie surfs baby waves and raises baby people.
Bling Capital’s Kyle Lui On How Small Funds Can Better Support Young Founders

On this episode of the LA Venture podcast, Bling Capital’s Kyle Lui talks about why he moved earlier stage in his investing and how investors can best support founders.

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This Language App Is Using Social Media Influencers To Raise Its Profile

Christian Hetrick

Christian Hetrick is dot.LA's Entertainment Tech Reporter. He was formerly a business reporter for the Philadelphia Inquirer and reported on New Jersey politics for the Observer and the Press of Atlantic City.

This Language App Is Using Social Media Influencers To Raise Its Profile
Photo courtesy of HeyPal

Katy Johnson, a reality TV star and globe-trotting travel blogger, has lately offered some advice to her more than 100,000 Instagram followers.

“I urge you to learn a new language,” the model has told her fans, noting how locals in the foreign countries she has visited appreciate the effort. “It’s essential to be able to connect with people as much as possible while I travel,” she wrote in another post last month. Johnson, a former contestant on the TV show “Joe Millionaire,” has repeatedly suggested one particular way to study a new language: HeyPal, a one-year-old language-learning app.

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