McDonald’s to open first vegetarian outlet

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US fast food giant McDonald’s, famed for its beef-based Big Mac burgers, on Tuesday said it will open its first ever vegetarian-only restaurant in the world in India next year.

The world’s second-biggest restaurant chain after Subway already tailors its menus to suit local tastes — which in India means no beef to avoid offending Hindus and no pork to cater for Muslim requirements.

It will open its first vegetarian outlet in the middle of next year near the Golden Temple in the Sikh holy city of Amritsar in northern India, where religious authorities forbid consumption of meat at the shrine.

“It will be the first time we have opened a vegetarian restaurant in the world,” a spokesman for McDonald’s in northern India, Rajesh Kumar Maini, told AFP.

After the opening in Amritsar, the US chain plans to launch another vegetarian outlet at Katra near the Vaishno Devi cave shrine in Indian Kashmir — a revered Hindu pilgrimage site that draws hundreds of thousands of worshippers a year.

It sees the potential for many more vegetarian restaurants across the country.

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