PETA asks Burger King to reopen as a chain of vegan restaurants

Burger King vegan burger
The fast-food giant launched its vegan "Impossible whopper" last year. Photo credit: Getty.

With takeaway joints reopening for drive-thru and delivery as Aotearoa moves into COVID-19 alert level 3 next week, the future of one fast-food fave remains uncertain. 

It was announced earlier this month that Burger King's local parent company was placed into receivership, leaving more than 2600 staff across Aotearoa nervous for their jobs.

But global animal rights charity People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) has a novel solution and is pleading with the fast-food giant to reopen as a fully vegan chain. 

In a letter to the receiver KordaMentha on Wednesday, PETA spokesperson Emily Rice urged the company "to reinvent the chain as a revolutionary, all vegan business, focused solely on a kinder, more environmentally friendly plant-based menu". 

Rice pointed to a University of Oxford study which found cutting meat and dairy products from your diet could reduce an individual's carbon footprint from food by up to 73 percent. 

"Happily, as the Rebel Whopper has proven, you can have a delicious burger without killing, appealing to not only vegans but also those concerned with the issues noted above - and those who simply like the taste," she wrote.

With the global vegan food market set to skyrocket to an estimated $31.4 billion by 2026 according to some estimates, Rice pointed that "vegan business is big business". 

"Receivership need not be negative," she wrote. 

"Not only is a global shift towards veganism necessary if we wish to make meaningful headway when it comes to avoiding environmental catastrophe and future global health crises, while respecting our fellow animals, it's also simply good business. 

"We hope Burger King New Zealand seizes this opportunity to reinvent itself as a pioneer by offering a delicious menu that everyone can feel good about - while capitalising on the booming demand for vegan food."