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The fast-food sandwich restaurant chain denied claims it would consider including such an option on its menu — though several competitors have jumped on the bandwagon in recent weeks.
“Contrary to reports, Arby’s is not one of the restaurant companies interested in working with Impossible Foods. We are America’s home for the meats, and are proud to have earned that title by doing things differently than the rest of the industry," an Arby's spokesman told Fox Business via email on Thursday.
The plant-based menu item goes against Arby's longtime slogan, “Arby's. We have the meats.”
"We opened our doors in 1964 offering a 69-cent, premium and abundant roast beef sandwiches while the rest of the competition was selling hamburgers for 15 cents. While Arby’s has been keeping tabs on this curious new world of 100% plant-based products posing as meats, following this trend like everyone else goes against who we are as a business," the spokesman added. "The chances Arby’s will bring plant-based protein to our menu — now or in the future — are absolutely impossible.”
Arby’s president Rob Lynch told Fortune he was shocked to read headlines stating Arby’s was considering adding plant-based meat items on its menus like many other fast food chains including Burger King and Little Caesars.
“’Please, please, please say it isn’t so!’” Lynch recalled telling colleagues, according to Fortune.
Lynch reiterated it "won't happen on [his] watch."
He added, “The only way would be if I got fired for some reason."
A number of restaurants have partnerships with Impossible Foods, including White Castle and Bareburger. According to research firm MarketsandMarkets, the global market for meat substitutes is expected to grow steadily from an estimated $4.6 billion in 2018 to $6.4 billion by 2023.
Despite the booming market, Lynch said the image of the Arby’s brand is “making big, high quality, meaty, abundant sandwiches.”
“That’s who we are,” Lynch said.
Fox Business' Jade Scipioni and Jennifer Earl contributed to this report.