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World’s First Hemp-Chicken Pizza Coming In Hot From HELL

Wellington, 25 March 2021 - HELL’s cult classic Death by Chicken Pizza makes a comeback tomorrow, but not as fans know it from its three previous limited releases that sold out in record time. Locally produced natural hemp-based chicken replaces the original buttermilk fried chicken, giving the pizza a new name - Death by FrankenChicken.

Death by FrankenChicken features a hemp product developed by Sustainable Foods in conjunction with Greenfern Industries and The Riddet Institute. The dynamic trio took on the challenge to develop a tasty plant-based meat alternative that can deliver the same or higher complete protein content and satisfy even the hardiest meat eater.

Although the pizza comes standard with bacon and is targeted at flexitarians, fans who would like to have a meat-free option can remove the bacon. Death by FrankenChicken cannot be offered as a fully vegetarian pizza due to the Hemp-based chicken being fried in the same oil as seafood and chicken.

Ben Cumming, CEO of HELL, says replacing chicken with a hemp-based alternative continues the conversation kick-started by Burger Pizza, and is part of their ongoing mission to encourage meat-eaters to try new plant-based proteins as they emerge.

“Replacing meat with a plant-based alternative now and then reduces your carbon footprint and helps the planet move towards a more sustainable food industry. The beauty of hemp is that it delivers the same amount of protein as chicken and can satisfy even the most hardcore meat-eaters.

“In blind taste tests before launch, our very discerning HELL staff incorrectly identified the hemp product as fried chicken. This is a glowing endorsement that we’ve found a plant-based protein that tastes like the real deal. Hemp is a hero ingredient in its own right on our menu, making its ethical benefits an added bonus.

“While we continue to experiment with sustainably produced plant-based alternatives, we also remain very focused on our premium free-range New Zealand meat. Our whole menu is now 100% free-range after recently switching to free-range New Zealand pork rib.”

The sustainable hemp ingredient on Death by FrankenChicken is homegrown in Taranaki and processed using a private hydroelectric power plant. Vegan, lower in saturated fat, and requiring very low water usage to produce, hemp offers 30g of protein per 100g. This puts it on par with chicken - and delivers a complete amino acid profile that is great for heart health and can help reduce stress and anxiety.

Sustainable Foods, founded by Justin Lemmens (CEO) and Kyran Rei, say hemp is also much kinder to Mother Nature.

“Hemp has been scientifically proven to absorb more CO2 per hectare than any other forest or commercial crop and is, therefore, the ideal carbon sink. One hectare of industrial hemp can absorb 22 tonnes of CO2 per hectare, and because it’s possible to grow two crops per year, absorption doubles,” Kyran Rei explains.

“By changing the way we eat, we have a real opportunity to provide a viable economic crop for New Zealand farmers to consider land-use change, away from food sources that require more intensive systems.”

Justin Lemmens says the hemp product on Death by FrankenChicken Pizza is the first foray into the market for plan*t, Sustainable Foods’ New Zealand-made brand. “We’re incredibly proud to have this opportunity with HELL and to be delivering what we hope people will find to be a delicious, sustainable option.”

Death by FrankenChicken is a limited-release and will be available while stocks last.

About HELL

Established in Wellington in 1996, HELL pizza has grown to become one of New Zealand’s most infamous and well-known brands. With more than 70 franchises throughout New Zealand and more than 1100 staff, it produces more than 75,000 free-range pizzas every week. With a focus on quality, it offers Kiwi consumers an ethical option in convenience foods. Supporting a range of causes - including the New Zealand Book Awards, and IHC’s Project Active - HELL is an active member of the communities in which it operates.

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