A petition recently launched to urge fast-food chain Wendy’s to add a vegan burger option has gained more than 25,900 signatures. College student Lana Weidgenant launched the petition to demand that the fast-food chain—which previously offered a black bean-based burger patty—modernize its menu and release vegan versions of its square patties. “There has been rapidly increasing consumer demand for a plant-based burger and Wendy’s is falling behind the times and missing an enormous opportunity by not offering any plant-based meal options in a year when 39 percent of consumers in the United States say they are actively trying to incorporate more plant-based foods in their diet,” Weidgenant writes in the petition pointing to Wendy’s competitors such as Carl’s Jr., Burger King, and Hardee’s, which have all launched plant-based burger options this year. “Nowadays, more and more people are realizing the animal welfare, environmental, and health issues tied to meat consumption and are looking to eat their meals in ways that are better for the planet, for animals, and for their health. Wendy’s has an amazing opportunity here to catch up to the times and to their competitors.” 

During its 2019 second quarter earnings call, Wendy’s CEO Todd Penegor revealed that the chain is considering adding a plant-based burger. “Clearly there is growth out there in plant-based proteins and we believe that it is a trend that will be here to stay,” Penagor told shareholders. “We’re taking a hard look at what the options would be for us at the restaurant.” 

Weidgenant previously petitioned several companies to launch vegan options, including Dunkin’ which is currently testing a Beyond Breakfast Sausage sandwich at select locations in New York City with a potential nationwide rollout in the works.

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