Yam Chin, local owner of KFC, Pizza Hut and Taco Bell, plans to roll out menus across its franchises over the next few days this month as part of the experiment, which could lead to a larger rollout later.
This test marks the debut of Beyond Meat’s burgers in mainland China – an important step for the California-based company. It previously supplied other alternative meat products to the country.
KFC on Wednesday overtook burgers at some of its locations in Beijing, Shanghai, Hangzhou and Chengdu.
The Pizza Hot product will also make its debut, the chain’s first festival in Chinese burgers. With Shanghai’s Pizza Hut loyalty program, diners will be able to try a new combo meal with a plant-based offer and another burger featuring true steak.
Taco Bell’s offer will be even more subtle, featuring a new taco that folds into classic ingredients like chipotle and black beans, as well as Beyond’s burger patties.
Unlike other tests, the Pizza Hut program will begin next week.
Overall, tests are fairly limited, with only a handful of stores running for a few days from each franchise. It’s small, considering there are about 9,300 restaurants across 1,400 cities, including other brands outside the three fast food chains considering Yum Chin.
If all goes well, the company will “explore larger scale rollouts in the future,” CEO Joe Wa Watt said in a statement.
Yam China has been working on achieving the trend of fake meat in recent months through multiple tests at KFC, including the testing of plant-based chicken nuggets and the limited run of plant-based pork at the end of Taco Bell.
Watt added, “We see great potential in the plant-based meat market in China.” “This latest introduction across KFC, Pizza Hut and Taco Bell brands is expected to get feedback from valued consumers across different regions of China.”
In a statement this week, Meat CEO Ethan Brown called the company’s new partnership a “significant milestone” in its global ambitions.