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7;s iconic burger, McRib, will be back for a limited time starting December 2.

USA TODAY

McDonald’s is likely to reform two food wars in 2021 – the meatless burger war and the Chicken Bread War.

The global fast food giant shared exclusively with USA TODAY on Monday that it has developed a new plant-based platform called McPlant with burger tests scheduled at markets in the world next year.

In a move that could kick off a new round of the Chicken Sandwich War, McDonald’s also confirmed that its new Crispy Chicken Sandwich will arrive in the United States early next year during its virtual investor update on Monday.

“McPlant is made exclusively for McDonald’s, by McDonald’s,” said Ian Borden, president of McDonald’s International. “In the future, McPlant could expand its plant-based lineup to include burgers, chicken alternatives, and breakfast sandwiches.”

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Plant-based claims and chicken sandwiches are part of a company’s new growth strategy called “Accelerate Arc”. The strategy includes a commitment to the core menu.

McDonald’s also posted quarterly earnings on Monday, beating analysts’ predictions. and shares of the Chicago company were up nearly 4% before the bell opened. Stock prices fell more than 1% at 11:45 am Monday morning.

McDonald’s is behind a competition to launch a plant-based burger in the US In 2019, Burger King launched its Impossible Whopper using a sandwich made from company food. food startup Impossible Foods, maker of Impossible bread.

Carl’s Jr., Del Taco and many more chains have also added plant-based dishes in 2019. Author Kathy Freston started a Change.org petition asking McDonald’s to add a vegan burger about seven years ago. The petition has more than 234,000 signatures.

McDonald’s said in a blog post on Monday: “There are other plant-based burgers, but McPlant delivers our iconic flavor in a sandwich to taste (and clean mouth) “. “It’s made with a juicy, plant-based pate that’s served on a warm sesame seed sandwich with all the vintage toppings.”

Borden says some markets will test burgers next year. Whether the vegan-friendly burger will arrive in the US and the potential timing is not yet known immediately.

“We are delighted about this opportunity because we believe we have a proven product,” Borden said. “When the customer is ready, we will be ready for them.”

Last September, McDonald’s began testing a plant-based burger called PLT, short for plants, lettuce and tomatoes, featuring a poisonous, meatless burger. rights by McDonald’s by Beyond Meat.

McDonald’s has also made factory-based selections in other countries and launched Big Vegan TS in Germany in May 2019.

Michele Simon, executive director of the Plant-Based Foods Association, previously told USA TODAY that the development of plant-based products in restaurants and stores is not a trend but rather is a movement.

“The big fast food chains are realizing that they have to respond to the growing needs of consumers,” Simon said. “We’re talking about the popularity of this diet. You can’t spot the more popular than Burger King and Carl’s Jr. “

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Crispy Chicken Sandwich coming soon

McDonald’s US President Joe Erlinger said US restaurants will introduce a new Crispy Chicken Sandwich in 2021. This premium chicken sandwich has been tested in Houston, Texas and Knoxville, Tennessee by the end of 2019. end of January.

“It’s a simple product that fits our US customer base – with chicken, potato rolls, sliced ​​pickles and butter. It was extremely coveted. I love it, ”said Erlinger. “More importantly, our customers loved it in the test.”

The chicken burger war of 2019 began after Popeyes launched New Orleans-style fried chicken on a sandwich as the chain began its Twitter feud with Chick-fil-A and other restaurants.

McDonald’s US franchise owners, part of the National Association of Owners, said in July 2019, before the Popeyes sandwich was released that a new premium chicken sandwich should be a priority. McDonald’s flagship.

“We believe it will start our journey to raise chickens, build authentic information about our chickens and get people to start seeing us differently,” Erlinger said on Monday. “We are excited about the moves we are making to meet – and exceed – customer expectations for delicious chicken. That’s how we’ll start building our chicken reputation.” mine.”

McDonald’s has cut its menu because of its staffing challenges amid the coronavirus pandemic but in recent months has added new items of pastries, limited meals for celebrities with Travis Scott and J Balvin and Spicy McNuggets.

In December, McDonald’s will bring its iconic barbecue sandwich, McRib, back within a limited time. This is the first time since 2012, it will be available at restaurants across the country.

McDonald’s launches a loyalty program

McDonald’s has announced plans to launch a loyalty program called “MyMcDonald’s”, which will be tested in the Phoenix region in the coming weeks. The program will adjust incentives.

The bonus program will be a spending-based scheme, similar to other restaurants, officials said.

In July, Wendy’s launched the Wendy’s Rewards loyalty program, where members can exchange cash with points earned when purchasing free food. Starbucks recently updated its Starbucks Rewards program and Taco Bell also launched the rewards program.

Currently, McDonald’s is offering discounts on its mobile apps.

Follow USA TODAY correspondent Kelly Tyko on Twitter: @KellyTyko

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