KFC tests new plant-based fried chicken

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This undated product image provided by KFC shows plant-based chicken. Kentucky Fried Chicken plans to test plant-based chicken nuggets and boneless wings on Tuesday, Aug. 27, 2019, at one of its restaurants in Atlanta. (KFC via AP)

AUGUSTA, Ga. (WJBF) – Is it really fried chicken — if it’s not chicken?

KFC is testing out ” Beyond Fried Chicken” in the Atlanta area. The offer is part of an exclusive, one restaurant test on August 27 at the Cobb Parkway restaurant near SunTrust Park in Atlanta (2637 Cobb Pkwy South East, Smyrna, Ga.).

“KFC Beyond Fried Chicken is so delicious, our customers will find it difficult to tell that it’s plant-based,” Kevin Hochman, president and chief concept officer, KFC U.S. said in a news release. “I think we’ve all heard ‘it tastes like chicken’ – well our customers are going to be amazed and say, ‘it tastes like Kentucky Fried Chicken!'”

Customer feedback from the Atlanta test will be considered as KFC evaluates a broader test or potential national rollout.

“KFC is an iconic part of American culture and a brand that I, like so many consumers, grew up with. To be able to bring Beyond Fried Chicken, in all of its KFC-inspired deliciousness to market, speaks to our collective ability to meet the consumer where they are and accompany them on their journey. My only regret is not being able to see the legendary Colonel himself enjoy this important moment,” Ethan Brown, founder and CEO, Beyond Meat added.

Nuggets or boneless wings will be available, each available in six or 12-piece combo meals. A complimentary sample will be given out from 10:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. with purchase of any KFC menu item, while supplies last.

Beyond Meat also sells plant-based burgers and sausages at grocery stores and some fast food chains like Carl’s Jr. and Del Taco. It sold frozen plant-based chicken strips until earlier this year, but pulled them off the market because it wanted to improve the recipe, according to the AP.

U.S. sales of meat substitutes are also expected to jump 78% to $2.5 billion between 2018 and 2023, according to Euromonitor.

Meanwhile, KFC is the first fast-food chain to offer beyond meat’s chicken.

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