McDonald's to open first-ever vegetarian restaurant

05 September 2012 by
McDonald's to open first-ever vegetarian restaurant

McDonald's is set to open its first-ever vegetarian-only restaurant next to Golden Temple in the Indian holy city of Amritsar.

The fast-food giant tailors its menus to local tastes, and is going vegetarian at its new site near the Golden Temple in the Sikh holy city of Amritsar in northern India, where religious authorities forbid consumption of meat at the shrine, according to the Daily Mail.

Rajesh Kumar Maini, a spokesman for McDonald's in northern India, said: "It will be the first time we have opened a vegetarian restaurant.

"There is a big opportunity for vegetarian restaurants (in India) as many Indians are vegetarian."

The fast-food giant is also planning to open another vegetarian outlet near the Vaishno Devi cave shrine in north-western Indian Kashmir - a revered Hindu pilgrimage site that draws hundreds of thousands of worshippers a year.

More widely, McDonald's in India has a menu that is 50% vegetarian. Its McAloo Tikki burger - which uses a spiced potato-based patty - is the top seller, accounting for a quarter of total sales.

"At the moment, India is still a very small market - we just have 271 restaurants in India and across the world we have nearly 33,000," Maini said.

"But when you look at the potential of the country, it is one of the top priority countries and we are laying the groundwork for capturing the market."

By Neil Gerrard

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