Lewis Hamilton is one of the backers behind a new plant-based burger chain, Neat Burger, launching in London next week in collaboration with meat alternative Beyond Meat.
As well as the five-time FIA Formula One champion, the brand is also supported by the Cream Group and entrepreneur and Beyond Meat investor Tommaso Chiabra.
The first Neat Burger site will open on 2 September at 4 Princes Street in London's Mayfair on the site that used to be Japanese restaurant Chisou. The group also has ambitious plans to expand the concept globally with 14 franchises scheduled in the next 24 months.
The menu will consist of three core burgers: ‘the neat,' ‘the cheese' and ‘the chick'n', as well as vegetarian ‘hot dogs' and sides including skinny fries, sweet potato fries and ‘tater tots'. Sites will stock eco-conscious and ethical drinks brands such as Jaden Smith's Just Water; Lemonaid; dairy-free coconut and soya-based milkshakes; and Toast Ale.
Beyond Meat burgers contain ingredients such as peas, beans, rice, beetroot and coconut oil and are designed to look and taste like meat.
Hamilton said: "I'm very passionate about being kinder to our world and also really respect Neat Burger's commitment to more ethical practices and supporting small businesses, so this is something I'm also really proud to support."
"But it is also about the product. As someone who follows a plant-based diet, I believe we need a healthier high street option that tastes amazing but also offers something exciting to those who want to be meat-free every now and again."
Ryan Bishti of the Cream Group says: "We're not preaching or shaming people for eating meat. We're offering an alternative that tastes as good as, if not better than meat."
The Cream Group also owns London nightclubs including Cirque le Soir in Soho, Drama in Mayfair and London Reign on Piccadilly; as well as Restaurant Ours in Knightsbridge. The group has also recently taken over the former Windmill club in Soho for a new venture that will launch later this year.
Chiabra said: "The meat industry is the biggest contributor to greenhouse emissions and its environmental impact is no longer sustainable together with the growth of the population. Neat Burger aims to disrupt the non-sustainable food industry and become a force for good."