Burger King is helping to do their part to combat greenhouse gas that's emitted from livestock — and it's making headlines for doing so. The popular fast-food franchise recently announced it's putting its cows on a low-methane diet in efforts to help the environment with its new "Reduced Methane Emissions Beef Whopper." This means the cows will be eating a lot more lemongrass in their diet.
The brand giant partnered up recently with a team of scientists from the Autonomous University at the State of Mexico and the University of California, Berkeley to develop the new idea. By simply adding 100 grams of lemongrass leaves to the cow's daily diet, this will help reduce the amount of methane released as they digest their food. "We are making all our findings public. This [is] an open-source approach to a real problem. If the whole industry, from farmers, meat suppliers, and other brands join us, we can increase scale and collectively help reduce methane emission that affect climate change," Fernando Machado, Global Chief Marketing Officer for Restaurant Brands International said in a statement according to Fox Business.
Methane is a greenhouse gas that is released when a cow digests its food. As a by-product of digestion, the gas traps the sun's heat and drastically effects climate change. According to the United Nation's Food and Agriculture Organization, livestock consists of 14.5 percent of global greenhouse gas emissions. With a new plan in place by Burger King, the fast-food chain announced that within the last three to four months, emissions have been reduced by 33 percent. Customers can purchase the new "Reduced Methane Emissions Beef Whopper" at five different locations in New York, Los Angeles, Miami, Austin, Portland and Oregon.
In recent years, the fast-food restaurant announced it would also be serving the new Impossible Whopper, made with Impossible Foods product, which is an alternative to meat. Their new efforts follow their partnership with the plant-based brand — set out to eliminate animal products in the next 15 years. They aren't stopping there though. Burger King also created an ad that featured a burger covered in mold as its way of announcing they were removing all artificial preservatives from their Whoppers at more than 400 restaurants by the end of the year.
While customers across the nation are looking to reduce their meat intake drastically, according to ABC News, a recent poll by The Associated Press - NORC Center for Public Affairs Research states on average two out of three Americans believe corporations have a responsibility to help fix climate change.