Florida Eatery Earns Top Score, While Its Hometown Rivals, Checkers and Rally's, Both Flunk
For Immediate Release:
September 15, 2016
Moira Colley 202-483-7382
Tampa, Fla. – The demand for healthy and humane plant-based meals—including the ever-popular veggie burger—continues to skyrocket. Now, PETA has released letter grades for burger joints across the country, noting which spots offer delicious vegan entrées and which need to play ketchup—and several Tampa restaurants are standouts on the list.
Local favorite Burger 21 rocked the rankings with an “A” grade for its Greek burger that can be made vegan, while its competitors, Checkers and Rally’s, both received an “F-“—the worst possible grade. The two chains flunked for not offering a single vegan-friendly menu option—even their French fries contain eggs.
“Burger 21’s vegan-friendly menu proves that no animals need to be harmed to make a crowd-pleasing burger,” says PETA Executive Vice President Tracy Reiman. “PETA urges Checkers and Rally’s to step up their game and satisfy the nation’s hunger for healthy, cruelty-free cuisine.”
Research from the National Restaurant Association confirms that plant-based meals are vital to an eatery’s success. In its What’s Hot 2016 Culinary Forecast, vegan entrées placed among the top 10 in the “Main Dishes” category and were said to be a “hot trend” or “perennial favorite” among 76 percent of professional chefs surveyed.
Another standout on PETA’s list is White Castle, which earned an “A” for its Veggie Sliders. Among other results, Wendy’s earned a “B” for piloting a black bean burger in a few locations, Burger King and Shake Shack each got a “C” for offering veggie burgers that contain milk and eggs, and Carl’s Jr. and Jack in the Box each received an “F.” Only one other restaurant earned an “F-“: McDonald’s, which serves no vegan options beyond a side salad.
PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to eat”—notes that cows raised for food are crammed together by the thousands in feces-filled lots. These sensitive, gentle animals are castrated and branded, often without pain relief. After being transported to slaughter in all weather extremes, they’re strung up by one leg and their throats are slit, sometimes while they’re still conscious.
In addition, cheap hamburger meat often comes from female cows on dairy farms, who are continually impregnated so that they’ll produce a steady supply of milk and whose calves are repeatedly torn away from them within days of birth. Once they’re no longer considered useful for milk production, mother cows are slaughtered for meat.
For more information, please visit PETA.org.