In a first for a UK restaurant which sells both meat and plant-based options, Mexican food chain Barburrito has announced that this month its plant-based chicken is on track to overtake real chicken as the most bought item on its menu.
The chain is supplied by THISTM, pioneers of creating realistic plant-based products.
Although grilled chicken still remains the most popular item on Barburrito’s menu, THISTM Isn’t Chicken is a close second, and in the last six months has overtaken the restaurant’s other real meat products, such as spicy shredded beef and pulled pork.
Barburrito has 14 sites across the UK including two in Manchester city centre and one in the Trafford Centre.
Barburrito’s announcement reflects the UK’s changing eating habits as figures revealed the UK has seen a 40% increase in consumers switching to veganism since 2020, rising from 1.1 million people to 1.5 million people at the beginning of this year.
Barclays analysts have predicted the value of the global plant-based food and drink market could soar by more than 1,000% – exceeding £100bn by the end of the decade.
Barburrito marketing manager Lynsey Hutchinson said: “We want to give our customers as much menu choices as possible and it’s been fantastic to see THISTM Isn’t Chicken become so popular.
“Whilst we know the plant-based filling has helped draw in a vegan fanbase, we’ve been surprised by how many meat-lovers have started mixing it up and giving plant-based a go.”
Co-founder of THISTM Andy Shovel ran a meat based burger chain before starting his plant-based company.
Mr Shovel said: “What an absolutely massive milestone for THIS – the dream has always been to make products as good as (if not better than) the real deal.
“Overtaking real, clucking chicken as the main protein in one of the UK’s favourite Mexican eateries is major.”