Papa John's rolls out vegan pizzas in South Korea | Totally Vegan Buzz

Papa John’s rolls out vegan pizzas in South Korea

Papa John's rolls out vegan pizzas in South Korea
Image: Papa John’s

Papa John’s is the first fast food chain to launch vegan pizzas in South Korea

Papa John’s has rolled out two new pizza offerings in more than 220 outlets in South Korea.

The fast food chain is supposedly the first to offer vegan pizza in the country.

The latest items to join the menu are Green Eat Vegetable Margarita and Green Eat Vegetable Garden Special.

Both the pizzas are created using coconut oil, starch, and vegan cheese. They contain no diary or gluten and have been certified from the UK-based Vegan Society.

“Although the domestic market is still small compared to the overseas vegan market, the role of a premium pizza brand is to respond to preferences of each consumer,” Jeon Joong-gu Papa John’s Korea head,said in a press release.

Veganism in South Korea

The vegan trend is steadily picking up in South Korea.

A number of Korean retailers have stepped into the vegan market to cater to the growing demand for meat-free oprions.

Shinsegae Food, a Korean food retailer and distributor, recently released vegan cold cuts under its Better Meat brand.

The brand offered three types of plant-based ham: bologna, mortadella, and a German-style variant and were made available to Starbucks across the country.

These products are a part of the growing trend of vegan food offerings, a market that is estimated to reach USD 14.02 billion by 2027.

The country is also at the forefront of the development of cultivated meat, which is produced from a small number of animal cells grown in bioreactors.

In December 2021, CellMEAT released images of Dokdo shrimp, a cultivated product that is indistinguishable from traditionally-produced shrimp.

Additionally, Sejong University researchers have developed the country’s first cultivated pork, which could potentially streamline the production method of one of the world’s most popular meats. The production of cultivated meat has the potential to improve the industry overall and make the products more widely accessible.

Papa John’s vegan trajectory

Papa John’s entered the vegan market in 2019 with three brand new cheesy vegan pizzas and marmite and cheese scrolls launched in the UK.

It then added Not-Chicken Vegan Bites, a Vegan Cheese Stuffed Crust, and The Alice Tai pizza to its UK lineup in 2021.

Since then the pizza giant has rolled out vegan options in other countries, including the Spain, Costa Rica and the Netherlands.

Last year, Papa John’s Chile tied up with local food technology company NotCo, to release a vegan pizza called the Vegan BBQ Shot topped with plant-based chicken vegan cheese, onions, olives, and barbecue sauce. 

Speaking to Bloomberg Línea, NotCo CEO and founder Matías Muchnick said: “Since NotCo’s inception, our priority has been to innovate and reinvent an industry that invites us to rethink how we feed ourselves.

“We chose to produce plant-based products because we know that, by taking the animal out of the equation, we considerably reduce pollution, and it is an honor to share these values and principles with a giant like Papa John’s.”

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