International sandwich shop Pret A Manger is embracing the New Year spirit by changing to Meatless Farm meatballs in its popular Swedish Meatball Hot Wrap. The vegan option will replace the former animal-based version for January to coincide with Veganuary.
The wrap is being launched as part of its new plant-based range, which will feature options such as a vegan breakfast baguette and cookies. Founded in 1983, Pret A Manger currently has over 450 shops in nine countries, and handful of Veggie Pret stores. Rumours circulated last year that all stores might eventually convert to plant-based.
Meatless Farm said on social media, “We’re thrilled to announce that our partnership with Pret A Manger will see our Meatless Farm Meatball Wrap replace the iconic Swedish Meatball Hot Wrap from today. This is a giant leap for us and the plant-based industry as a whole, and with Veganuary seeing a record 500,000 sign-ups this year, we’re just a little bit excited!”
The replacement mirrors yesterday’s news that Chinese fast-food chain Dicos is to permanently replace its egg patty with JUST Egg’s plant-based product. However, at this stage, the Pret swap will only be for one month, with plans to return the animal-based meatballs in February.
Meatless Farm was recently identified as the fastest growing brand in the rapidly expanding meat alternatives sector. Its products are now stocked in many leading foodservice chains and major supermarkets and the company has expanded internationally to several regions. The most significant expansion plans involve the US market, with plans to raise up to $75 million in 2021 and launch a series of new products.
The new wrap features the Meatless Farm meatballs, as well as red tapenade, chipotle ketchup and red onions and to celebrate the release of their vegan Meatless Meatball Wrap, Pret A Manger have teamed up with west London grime artist Big Zuu to create a new advert promoting the wrap.
“To encourage more people to try the new plant-based meat alternative hot wrap, we’ve decided to pull our Swedish meatball wrap for a month as we’re that confident our customers will quickly fall in love with it,” Pret’s UK Food & Coffee Director Briony Raven explained in a statement.
Morten Toft Bech, Meatless Farm’s founder, commented: “The awareness of the impact intensively-farmed meat has on climate change is driving an increase in “ecotarians” who eat in a way which minimises impact on the environment, and this is something that’s going to be an even keener focus in 2021 as climate change action dominates the global agenda.
“Consumers are increasingly demanding meat free choices when they are eating out or on the go as plant-based alternatives move from being a specialist option to top-of-menu with demand coming from meat-reducers and the carbon-conscious as much as traditional non-meat eaters.
“We work closely with our foodservice partners to help them develop their plant-based offering as demand soars, especially via new delivery platforms and at home offerings. To work with such like-minded brands on iconic menu items at one of the most important times of year for plant-based food is fantastic.”