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Air New Zealand

New Zealanders Angry Over Airline’s Vegan Burgers

New Zealanders Angry Over Airline’s Vegan Burgers
Jennifer Billock

Even though rates of plant-based dietary choices have ballooned, New Zealanders still had a fit when Air New Zealand launched vegan burgers on their menu for flights to and from the United States, a menu offering that will continue until late October.

Air New Zealand recently caused a stir among some passengers and organization in the country by launching a new menu offering for flights to and from the United States: a vegan burger. The Impossible Burger is plant-based and produced in San Francisco, meant to be a realistic substitute for regular beef burgers in both taste and texture.

Some political leaders were less than pleased with the airline’s choice, and called Air New Zealand out on what they see as an injustice to the country.

“Disappointing to see Air NZ promoting a GE substitute meat burger on its flights to the USA,” Nathan Guy, one of New Zealand’s center-right National Party’s MPs, said on Twitter, reported by MSN. “We produce the most delicious steaks and lamb on the planet – GMO and hormone free. The national carrier should be pushing our premium products and helping sell NZ to the world.”

New Zealand First, one of the country’s nationalist political parties, agreed with Guy—the primary industries spokesperson, Mark Patterson, told the NZ Herald that offering a vegan burger on the flights is like slapping the country’s red meat producers in the face.

Regardless, the airline will continue to offer the vegan burgers through late October on routes between Auckland and Los Angeles.

[Photo: Shutterstock]

View Comments (5)


  1. makrom

    July 10, 2018 at 3:58 am

    WHO recommendation is not to eat meat more than twice per week. Add to that the fact that cattle are the main contributor of CO2 as well as methane in the atmosphere (though an airline might not be in a position to complain about that). These facts vs. some patriotic nonsense. Agriculture plays an important role for NZ’s economy, but I haven’t seen any other western country with such appalling water quality. If anything, NZ should continue shifting its focus towards more lucrative sectors. In the last 2 centuries, an economy focused on agriculture was capable of providing modest wealth at best.

  2. chavala

    July 10, 2018 at 8:29 am

    ok…seriously? Are Kiwis that stupid? This is the vegetarian menu option. Nobody is forcing you to eat it

  3. tanja

    July 10, 2018 at 11:45 am

    Why cant they have both ? I am a vegetarian so I would eat it. But I also have respect for people who are not vegetarians. They should have their “real” burger. We cant force food on people.


    July 10, 2018 at 2:06 pm

    But does it taste good? That’s the real question. Some of the vegan burgers taste just plain awful. And sad to say, some of the really good ones were discontinued(Safeway stores, about 10 years ago, had an excellent mushroom/bulgar wheat one that was delicious).

    I’d rather have more potatoes, or hummus, or ice cream, or—dare I say—meat, over a veggie burger that tastes nasty. Taste is much of a part of it. Especially when you pay good money for the tickets.

  5. corbetti

    July 10, 2018 at 3:02 pm

    yes, it is delicious. I had one in a burger joint in SF a month ago and i actually thought it tasted like a proper cheeseburger from my own grill (from before my vegetarian days).

    Seems like the kiwis are crying about nothing – no one is forcing them to eat it.

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