Portland, Oregon-based Next Level Burger, which raised $20M last year stating lofty plans to quadruple its store count and open 1,000 locations by 2025, states it is disrupting the fast-casual industry with its sustainable offerings.
The vegan fast food chain, which is currently operating ten locations in the USA, reports that it carried out a survey of 339 respondents from Next Level Burger stores in five key markets — Portland, Denver, Brooklyn, San Francisco, and Seattle — which it says shows how its vegan offerings are displacing meat consumption.
In its methodology, Next Level Burger says it did not include its Texas store in the survey. “Known for a barbecue and beef-centric food culture, we would expect even more guests in the Texas market who don’t identify as vegan to have sought out a meat-based meal had they not instead eaten at Next Level Burger’s Austin location. The potential for meat consumption displacement in this market is a Texas-size opportunity,” explains the team.
Key takeaways from the survey are as follows:
- Proven Displacement: The survey’s most significant finding is that nearly 21% of respondents admitted they would have opted for an omnivorous meal at another restaurant or at home if they hadn’t chosen to eat at Next Level Burger that day. This data underscores Next Level Burger’s success in effectively displacing meat-based meals with plant-based alternatives, claims the company.
- Wide Audience Appeal: 52.8% of the survey respondents did not identify as vegans, signifying the brand’s widespread popularity among non-vegan consumers and ability to appeal to a diverse range of diners. This is key, as reducing national meat consumption hinges on convincing omnivores and flexitarians to opt for plant-based meals with more frequency.
- Measurable Environmental Impact: Next Level Burger’s displacement data translates into a significant reduction in greenhouse gas emissions, it says. By replacing meat-based meals with plant-based options, Next Level Burger helps lower the overall carbon footprint and contributes to saving water and land resources compared to traditional meat-based diets.
Matt de Gruyter, CEO and co-founder of Next Level Burger, states, “It’s a common perception that animal protein analogs may just be replacements for preexisting vegan offerings like mushrooms or tofu, but this data challenges that assumption. Our mouthwatering plant-based menu is compelling enough that even omnivores skip the meat, and we know that choice has a huge impact on the health of our planet. While the plant-based sector has experienced challenges, this data affirms our mission and further excites us to continue expanding our footprint.”