Industry News

Top 10: A tale of 2 chickens, Walmart’s ghost kitchens, Whole Foods’ Just Walk Out stores

Two of this week’s most-clicked food and beverage stories focused on chicken -- or to be more accurate, the absence of chicken. Plant-based food maker Impossible Foods rolled out its first chicken alternative, adding Impossible Chicken Nuggets to its lineup of burger and sausage alternatives. The nuggets debuted in several restaurants this week, and Impossible plans to have the soy-based nuggets in more than 10,000 retail locations by the end of the year. 

Plant-based proteins are growing in popularity, which could be good news for retailers and foodservice outlets that are having trouble sourcing actual chicken due to supply chain struggles. KFC cited limited availability of boneless chicken items in its decision to scale back advertising of its chicken tenders. The chain will instead focus marketing efforts on bone-in chicken, which is more readily available, KFC US President Kevin Hochman said.

Stories about high-tech changes on deck for two major retailers also stood out to readers this week. News that Whole Foods Market will open two new stores in 2022 that feature Amazon's Just Walk Out technology was this week’s most-clicked story. The stores, planned for Sherman Oaks, Calif., and Washington, D.C., will forgo staffed checkout lines in favor of self-checkout kiosks and Just Walk Out lanes. Walmart this week opened the first Ghost Kitchen Brands location inside a Rochester, N.Y., store. The Canadian company plans to open at least 30 locations inside Walmart stores, offering takeout and delivery from brands including Cinnabon, Saladworks, Quiznos and Shaquille O'Neal's Big Chicken.

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