Plant-based meat substitutes are becoming more and more popular — but celebrity chef Bobby Flay isn’t jumping on board, yet.
“At this point, it’s not something that I have in my restaurants,” he told CNBC’s “Power Lunch ” on Tuesday.
His comments came after Little Caesars announced Monday that it will sell a pizza with plant-based sausage crumbles made by Impossible Foods.
Flay, whose holdings currently include six restaurant brands across the U.S., said it comes down to cost. At his fast-casual chain Bobby’s Burger Palace, the check averages around $11.
“Compared to what we serve from a beef standpoint, from a regular burger so to speak, versus something like the Impossible Burger … the Impossible Burger would be about three times the cost to us,” he said. “Then obviously we’d have to pass that along to our customers.”
That doesn’t mean Bobby’s Burger Palace isn’t offering a vegetarian option. It does serve veggie burgers but there is a difference between those and the newer options, Flay pointed out.
Veggie burgers are made of chickpeas, beans and grains, he said. Impossible Foods and Beyond Meat, which has surged since its May 2 debut on the public market, are both trying to emulate what meat looks and tastes like.
“At this point, because they are sort of the newer or first to the market, the cost so far is a tiny bit prohibitive for my fast-casual restaurants,” Flay said.
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