Burger King, the renowned American international chain of fast food restaurants, has reportedly announced that it is introducing a new Whopper patty that is made from cows reared on a low-methane diet. The new burger would only be available for a limited time period at select outlets in Los Angeles, Portland, Austin, New York, and Miami.
The brand stated that it has added approximately 100 grams of lemongrass to the daily diet of its cows to keep them from producing excess methane.
The fast-food chain collaborated with scientist from the Autonomous University at the State of Mexico as well as the University of California, Davis to address the detrimental impact of beef on the environment. As per the Environmental Protection Agency, in 2018, livestock was responsible for nearly 3.9% of the U.S. global greenhouse gas emissions. Meanwhile, as per the United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization, from a global perspective, the number is approximately 14.5%.
Based on preliminary tests, the lemongrass diet eliminates approximately a third of methane emissions every day in the final three or four months of a cow’s life.
Concerns relating to climate change have also led to some consumers reducing their total meat intake and in fact switching to consuming meat alternatives from time to time. Overall, the fast-food giant sells meatless burgers as well as sausage patties produced by Impossible Foods. In 2019, a report that was commissioned by Impossible Foods found that its burgers produced nearly 89% fewer GHG emissions than the patties made from beef.
Burger King is not the sole restaurant chain which is hoping to make its business all the more environmentally friendly. Recently, Starbucks made a pledge to turn itself resource positive and is including meat substitutes to its menu as a part of that pledge. Starbucks has also made plans to move to reusable packaging.
Meanwhile, another Burger Kind rival, McDonald’s has also made efforts towards making its business more eco-friendly. It recently opened a new flagship outlet at Walt Disney World Resort that generates adequate amounts of renewable energy to cover its energy requirements on a net yearly basis.