Vegan Sues Burger King Because Impossible Whopper is Cooked Near Meat
Fast food companies often
have to deal with one lawsuit after another. It seems as if one burger joint or another is always being sued, and the reason for the lawsuits are often quite varied and strange. The latest weird lawsuit was against none other than Burger King. The company recently introduced a new item to their menu called the Impossible Whopper. They were hoping to bank off the trend of creating meatless burgers. Their ad campaign and their product proved to be quite popular, and many truly enjoyed the taste of the meatless burger.
However, not everyone was happy with the results or the way that Burger King was making their Impossible Whopper. On November 18, 2019, a lawsuit was filed in Miami federal court by Phillip Williams. The proposed class-action lawsuit stated that Williams would not have ordered the Impossible Whopper from an Atlanta eatery if he had known it was going to be cooked on the same grill as meat.
The lawsuit accuses Burger King of false advertising, as well as making money by offering a vegan option that is not truly vegan because it is cooked in proximity to meat.
Most people realize that it would be next to impossible, pun intended, to add all new grills to all of the Burger Kings that were serving the meatless burger across the world. Adding a new grill that was just for these burgers would not be cost-effective, it would take a substantial amount of time, and there was no guarantee that the burger would even be a success. It simply wouldn’t be feasible for Burger King to have an entirely different grill.
Williams likely understands this as well, but he believes that Burger King should be required to plainly disclose that their regular burgers and Impossible Whoppers are being cooked on the same grill. This way, those who are vegan will easily realize that the meatless burger they are getting has actually been touching meat byproducts.
Burger King, which is based out of Toronto, said that they do not comment on pending litigation. When looking at the Burger King website, though, there is a disclaimer that says there is a nonbroiler method available for those who want a meat-free option. The lawyer representing Williams has not mentioned anything about the disclaimer at the time of this writing.
It is also unclear if this information about having a second method of cooking the Impossible Whopper is readily available in the actual fast food restaurants themselves. It is more likely that someone would have to know about this option and then explicitly ask for it. It was noted that the drive-thru that Williams visited did not have any signage that would indicate that the Impossible Whopper would be cooked on the same grill as the meat.
The lawsuit says that Williams suffered monetary damages in the amount paid to purchase the sandwich and that other customers have made similar complaints online regarding the same thing. If this is true and the lawsuit goes forward, it could mean that a number of other customers join the class action suit against the fast food giant.
What Happens Next?
Thus far, the Impossible Whopper has been a success for Burger King, but you can be sure they do not like this type of publicity. In an effort to reduce potential negative backlash from the incident, they could make sure that they have clear indications of where the burgers are typically cooked and that there is an alternative option available. If they make the changes, it is unclear what would happen with the lawsuit going forward.