Sweetgreen Is Introducing Steak. What About Its Climate Goals?

Nearly two decades after the fast-casual salad chain Sweetgreen was founded, the company announced on Tuesday that it would introduce beef to its menu.

According to Nicolas Jammet, a founder of Sweetgreen, the addition of a caramelized garlic steak option comes at a time when many Americans are trying to increase their protein intake and also as Sweetgreen is looking to attract more customers for dinner.

The decision, however, leaves many questions about how the company, which has more than 225 locations, may accomplish its goal of carbon neutrality by 2027 when beef production is a significant factor in climate change. As the company’s website states, “Not only do we have a duty on a human level to do our part, but the business case for a great product that also protects the planet is clear.”

Mr. Jammet said the company waited to introduce steak in part because it was challenging to prepare among other items in the restaurants, but also because Sweetgreen wanted to be intentional about how it sourced the beef.

“We could’ve had steak earlier, but we launched without it and our business did really well,” Mr. Jammet said.

He added: “As more people are eating more meat, we see that as an opportunity to go and really be a change agent and catalyst in the supply chain.”

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