Papa John’s delighted UK vegans with the launch of plant-based cheese pizzas this year, but joy quickly turned to anger and illness as the company repeatedly delivered the dairy version to unsuspecting vegans.
The delivery chain has introduced pizzas made with Bute Island’s Sheese in place of dairy cheese, but vegans have been sharing horror stories of being served dairy cheese despite ordering a vegan version.
Blunders by Papa John’s have been widely reported on social media, while the company reported having run out of vegan cheese. Vegan pizzas were even removed from the company’s app in some areas.
Mia Lilith, a vegan from Nottingham, ordered from Papa John’s this week and was horrified when after realising she had consumed dairy rather than coconut-based Sheese.
She told Totally Vegan Buzz: “I’m pregnant and it’s made me extremely sick to the point I couldn’t get out of bed. My boyfriend had to leave work because he was so ill.
“Things like this can get people killed if they are allergic. We recently had the same thing happen with Frankie and Benny’s a few weeks ago when they released their new vegan menu.”
Mia’s boyfriend phoned Papa John’s branch in Arnold, Nottingham, and was told that as the restaurant had run out of vegan cheese, staff had used the normal dairy cheese instead.
But all three of the large Hot Pepper Passion pizzas she ordered came in boxes labelled ‘vegan’.
The vegan of six years continued: “I took a few bites and thought it tasted too similar to what I remember dairy cheese tasting like.
“My boyfriend and friend also ate some and were not sure, so we got my aunty, who isn’t vegan, to try it. She said it’s definitely dairy cheese.”
Mia said staff did not seem to understand the seriousness of the situation.
Although Mia praised Papa John’s for bringing out more vegan options she worried about the level of training given to staff.
Vegan Daniel Storer reported a similar incident on social media, at the same branch of Papa John’s. This time he noticed his vegan pizza and Marmite scrolls clearly contained dairy cheese.
After notifying the store, an employee told him due to a shortage of vegan cheese they had used a mix of dairy and vegan.
Papa John’s told Totally Vegan Buzz in a statement: “We take quality control incredibly seriously.
“Having been notified of a limited number of issues related to orders of our vegan cheese alternative pizzas, we will be investigating these with the relevant franchise owners as a matter of urgency and will be conducting thorough checks throughout our entire network.”
Would you order the Papa John’s vegan pizza? Tell us in the comments below!
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