Pizza Chain Investigated For Using Plant-Based Meat On 'Burger' Pizza
Hell Pizza has been slammed for switching beef for plant-based meat on one of its pizzas.
The New Zealand based pizza chain claims to have "the best damned pizza in this life or the next," but is now being investigated for failing to alert customers to its use of Beyond Meat, a plant-based meat alternative.
The fast-food company sold 3,000 of its new Burger Pizza last month, with most customers not aware it didn't contain a single lick of beef.
While Beyond Meat's website warns that one of the products' main components, pea protein, could pose a risk for people with peanut allergies, that information wasn't disclosed to customers ordering their dinner.
After the news broke last week, dozens of people took to social media to complain about the dangers, particularly regarding allergies.
Being served beans without me knowing would legit land me in hospital with a bowel obstruction. I order from @HELLpizza666 on a near-weekly basis BECAUSE that can cater to my dietary requirements, but I won’t trust them for that anymore 🤷♀️ https://t.co/NMedda3IBr— Kate Montgomery (@KateMontgom) June 28, 2019
Some thought the move was simply another publicity stunt.
But an investigation was immediately launched with the Ministry for Primary Industries meeting with Hell Pizza to discuss the requirements of the Food Act.
On Wednesday morning the company released a statement acknowledging the concerns of its customers, but not apologising for its decision.
"We acknowledge there were concerns around the contents of the Beyond Meat Patty, particularly in relation to allergens, and for customers being able to make an informed decision when ordering their pizza," the statement reads.
"Our 75 stores had a full list of the Burger Pizza’s ingredients and were told to fully inform customers who asked of the pizza’s ingredients while it was available for sale".
Hell Pizza said that the meeting with the industry body was "very positive" with the two parties talking through all concerns and how the needs of consumers can be appropriately met.
The Burger Pizza is now off the menu, the company blaming the cost of the plant-based ingredient, not the drama.
"Our Burger Pizza is now sold out, and due to the cost of Beyond Meat, we don’t have any immediate plans to add it to our regular menu."
READ MORE: The Surprising Story Behind Hawaiian Pizza
"While we still love meat, we think there’s room for more Kiwis to consider meat-free options, just to take a bit of pressure off the planet," the statement concluded.
This guy just about summed up the whole debacle: