Tell Formula 1 race car driver Lewis Hamilton among those entering the meatless, plant-based burger business following the growing popularity of Burger King & # 39; s Impossible Whopper, which has caught the attention of consumers and taken the fast food market by storm.  Hamilton, 34, along with Italian nightclub promoter and founder Tommaso Chiabra and investor Ryan Bishti, opens the Neat Burger just off London's Regent Street on Monday, with several more locations in the UK to follow.
They are currently seeking £ 1[ads1]5 million to fund extensions to sites at Covent Garden and Kings Cross.
"We are not aiming for vegans or a plant-based niche, but aiming to convert meat eaters," Bishti said in a statement. "We are part of a movement that is happening when you look at the world today in the Amazon with deforestation of crops and agriculture. This is a perfect way to make a change."
The plant-based burger craze went viral when Burger King introduced its "Impossible Whopper" on August 8, where 45 of the meatless burgers were sold at Burger King locations a day, according to analyst Andrew Charles.
To capitalize on the concept's growing popularity among consumers, Hamilton and the company are also planning a US place to launch sometime next year, with the intention of opening 14 more Neat Burger locations around Europe over the next two years.
Hamilton, UK native and the richest athlete in the country with a net worth of £ 187 million, vegetarians returned in 2017. The five-time Formula 1 world champion now has a significant stake in the company.
The vegan and vegetarian food market has exploded Over the years, with the amount of vegans in the UK climbing from 150,000 in 2014 to over 600,000 in 2018, the Vegan Society reports.  MORE FROM FOXBUSINESS.COM …
Hamilton is hardly the only sports figure or celebrity to enter the plant-based burger game, as Jay-Z, Trevor Noah, Serena Williams and Katy Perry invest in Impossible Foods while The market for meatless burgers continues to grow worldwide.
Burger King has led the recent market expansion of plant-based burgers, and the payout has been hard to ignore for competitors, with Impossible Whopper projecting to contribute 6% to same-store growth at US Burger Kings this quarter, according to the market research and investment company Cowen.
"Our 6% estimate in the same store for 3Q involves instances of a one-time consumption of the Impossible Whopper trial, and no doubt countered by awareness that continues to grow with Burger King using TV commercials to promote innovation," he said Charles in a statement released last Thursday.
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