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A fast food bakery chain in America and Canada is making it easier than ever for customers to choose vegan meals.
Panera Bread – which sells salads, pasta, soups, sandwiches and bakery items among other products – will be launching digital ‘curated’ menus that allow diners to select their ‘diet type’.
Panera CEO Ron Shaich said the system will ‘guesswork out of our menu’.
There will be three curated menus – plant-based, protein-rich and nutrient-packed. Customers will pick one of these diet types instead of going through every dish on the menu. There will be 30 vegan or vegetarian salad options.
A new vegan salad will also be available soon – the ancient grain Greek.
Panera claims it is the first national restaurant chain to ‘integrate curated menus into digital ordering’ – with approximately 25 per cent of its orders currently coming in digitally via its in-store kiosk, website, or app.
And according to an article in Fortune, the eatery is often a frontrunner when it comes to innovation, saying: “Restaurant chain Panera Bread is usually ahead of the pack when it comes to its food policies.
“The St. Louis-based chain started serving chicken raised without antibiotics more than a decade ago, long before the issue hit most consumers’ radars. Or take the company’s announcement last year when it committed to ‘clean ingredients’, meaning no artificial colors, sweeteners, flavors, and preservatives.
Director of Wellness and Food Policy, Sara Burnett, adds: “We know that food is more than just fuel. In many ways food is medicine. It’s a macro-trend that we’re seeing, and rightfully so.”