The McVegan Burger: When Capitalists Miss the Point of Veganism
By Milly Hailstone
If you haven’t already heard, right at the end of last year McDonald's introduced a vegan burger in Sweden and Finland. Yep, it’s seriously called the McVegan. So, what does that make the rest of their burgers? McMeats?
Would You Eat a McVegan Burger?
Don’t get me wrong - it’s brilliant that veganism is expanding in a huge way, but when corporate giants jump on the bandwagon for the wrong reasons, it gets kind of messed up.
I’m pretty sure they aren’t doing it for the animals. They just wanna get their hands on those good vegan bucks…
McDonald's goes through 70,000,000 pounds of beef every year (how many dead cows is that?) and just because they bring one vegan burger to the market, it shouldn’t disguise the fact that they cause the mass murder of animals. One vegan product can’t put right all of the problematic aspects of the company.
It seems that the burger in question was created to bring vegans back through those golden arches. So, while some people are arguing that the McVegan is saving animals lives, I’m over here thinking that the meat eaters will stick to their BigMacs and cheeseburgers, rather than opt for this cruelty-free option. Thus, only bringing in more profit for McDonald's by catering to the vegan market. The consumption of animals will remain the same, and this company will get to profit from our vegan money.
I’ll never buy a McVegan, as my money would be going straight to a company that 100% contradicts my beliefs. I wouldn’t even consider a McVegan burger to be vegan - ok, it might not contain animal products, but it’s literally another mass-produced food product that I have no desire to try.
Simultaneously Interested and Repulsed
But, I’m also conflicted. To find a vegan burger in a powerful chain restaurant symbolises how far this cause has come, and actually kind of increases awareness. Meat eaters will see the word ‘vegan’ on the menu and it will be more and more normalised.
We’re currently seeing a trend in the plant-based milk industry. Some dairy farmers are ditching cow’s milk, in favour of almond, soy, and oat milk. In years to come will the same happen to restaurants? (Veggie Pret springs to mind) In 20 years, will McDonald's be 100% vegan? I mean, that’s not likely - but the dairy industry is heading in a direction that no one ever thought it would.
This comment on a Reddit thread discussing the topic describes my feelings perfectly: “Simultaneously interested and repulsed.”
As a final note, given the choice, I’ll support a vegan restaurant over one that sells 90% meat every single time. I’m pretty the McVegan can’t be very tasty - and it will make you feel like crap after, too!
What do you think about this? Would you eat a McVegan? Let me know in the comments!
Fellows vegan, I wanna hear your story - if you’d like to write a guest post on this blog please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.