Credit: Hell Pizza/ Facebook

Pizzeria Angers Non-Vegans By Serving Beyond Meat on Pizzas

by | July 3, 2019

A New Zealand pizzeria called Hell Pizza surprised a lot of their customers recently. They sold 3000 customers their new Burger Pizza, and later revealed on their Facebook page, all those who enjoyed their latest offering last week actually devoured pizzas topped with a meat alternative According to the pizzeria, they did not reveal it was actually Beyond Meat used on their pizza because they were ‘confident’ eaters would enjoy it regardless.

Pizzaria Sells Beyond Meat Pizzas To Customers Without Revealing The Origin
Credit: beyondmeat.com

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Pizzaria Sells Beyond Meat Pizzas To Customers Without Revealing The Origin

A New Zealand pizza chain, Hell Pizza, last week launched a new offering called Burger Pizza which featured a “medium-rare burger patty.” Unbeknownst to them, 3000 eaters consumed the pizza without realizing it had a cruelty-free version of meat. Apparently, eating cruelty-free meat isn’t everyone’s cup of tea.

According to BBC, the pizza chain later revealed on their Facebook page all the Burger Pizzas they sold featured plant-based Beyond Meat. “Were you one of the 3,000 people who have been completely fooled by our Burger Pizza?” the pizzeria wrote on Facebook.

Following the announcement, the company went under the fire from critics who reportedly accused Hell Pizza of “deceiving and endangering” customers. However, the company denied misleading them and stated it was their way of raising awareness and initiating a discussion.

Hell Pizza Under Fire

“So Hell Pizza are liars, and thieves (selling a different product than advertised). I’ll never buy another Hell pizza,” wrote one person in comments.

“Wtf are you misleading people and attempting to replicate meat? Do you replicate murder elsewhere? Weirdos,” someone else commented.

“You bitches need to go out of business!” the other critic wrote.

“Disgraceful behavior. Is anything you sell actually real or are other ingredients processed crap? Just lost a customer,” the other lambasted.

However, not all reactions were against the product. People even enjoyed the offering. Here are a few of their comments:

“Awesome stuff, get the world eating vegan 💖”

“Excellent! Both the pizza and the resulting dialogue

“Tried and tested this weekend…. sooooo goood!!!! ❤”

“Well done Hell Pizza, I salute you for raising awareness about sustainable and ethical food choices! I will be visiting NZ soon and will gladly visit one of your restaurants!”

Regret Offending, Not the Outcome

Hell Pizza, according to BBC, found offline responses to the product were positive. “Customers who tried the pizza show the true public reaction better than the debate on social media,” they stated.

Regarding the decision to sneak Beyond Meat on their pizza without notice, general manager Ben Cumming told BBC in a statement that it was intended to “start a conversation.” He was quoted as saying:

“A lot of people are instantly put off by the idea of fake meats, so we made the call to not reveal its meat-free origins… because we were so confident they’d enjoy these patties.”

Ben Cumming via bbc.com

The usage of the meat-alternative, some claim, means the pizza chain has breached Fair Trade law. However, the company has denied the allegations stating:

“We are very confident there is no breach of the fair trading act, and Consumer NZ agrees with us.

“We haven’t lied about the product – we rightly called the product burger patties, and customers have read into that what they will. 

“If covertly adding meat-free options onto a pizza encourages more people to be open-minded, we’re happy to do that.”

Ben Cumming via bbc.com

Hell Pizza reportedly declared they have no plans to repeat this; however, the response to the plant-based offering was overtly positive. Over 80 percent were happy with the plant-based burger even after discovering what it was, Stuff reports.

The ingredients were always reflected on the website and now it is updated mentioning “Beyond Meat” medium rare chunks, which is made of peas, mung beans, and rice proteins, sans soy, gluten, and GMO.

What do you think about the reaction – both for and against? Let me know your thoughts in comments.

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