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Marketing stunt? Some restaurants sell Impossible, Beyond Burgers without telling customers they’re meat free

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Credit: PATRICK T. FALLON/BLOOMBERG NEWS
This article or excerpt is included in the GLP’s daily curated selection of ideologically diverse news, opinion and analysis of biotechnology innovation.

How do you get die-hard meat eaters to try a plant-based burger? You trick them.

The rise of meatless meat is inspiring early adopters to dupe family and friends—or in the case of restaurants, their customers. As might be expected, it doesn’t always go over well.

New Zealand-based Hell Pizza in June also served pizzas with vegetarian hamburger crumbles made by Beyond Meat without telling customers.

The restaurant got nearly 2,000 comments on its Facebook page in response to the gimmick, with some people blasting the company’s ethics. “Stupid and completely irresponsible!!! Ever heard of food allergies? ….” one commenter wrote.

Hell Pizza said most customers who ate the pizza were pleasantly surprised, but acknowledged some people were concerned about potential allergens.

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Seth Goldman, executive chairman of Beyond Meat’s board, said he appreciates the trickery as a marketing stunt that showcases how meat-like their products are, but added that he’s against the products not actually being labeled as to what they really are.

Impossible Foods doesn’t put constraints on how restaurants or retailers market its products but has advised some firms against pranking customers when they’ve asked for advice, a company spokeswoman said. “We don’t prank or trick,” she said.

Read full, original article: How to Get Die-Hard Meat Eaters to Try Impossible Burgers: Trick Them

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