- CKE Restaurants brand Hardee's has brought back its Original Roast Beef Sandwich. To celebrate the return of the "fan-favorite," the QSR has launched the "Save the Veggies" campaign, according to a press release.
- As part of "Save the Veggies" campaign — inspired by the vegetable-free, meat-only roast beef sandwich — Hardee's will plant 10 million vegetables nationwide in partnership with the nonprofit American Community Gardening Association.
- "Hardee's is inspired by its neighbors and local community... together, Hardee's and ACGA recognize the value of bringing the community together," Jenna Folk, director of brand marketing for Hardee's, said in a statement.
The goals of Hardee's "Save the Veggies" campaign appear to be twofold: the CKE brand can both appeal to consumers who want fast-food to be without frills or healthy half-measures, while also proving its cause-related bona fides. While consumers feel compelled to eat healthy foods, 85% admit to indulging in less-healthy options more than half the time, according to a survey by L.E.K. Consulting. In kind, Gen Zers are 20% more likely to visit fast-food restaurants compared to other generations like millennials, who prefer healthier options.
Meanwhile, by teaming with an environmentally and community-focused nonprofit, Hardee's adds some heft to its 10 million vegetable promise. Brands with a high sense of purpose grow two times faster than those without, according to Kantar Consulting. "Save the Veggies" could give Hardee's the shine of being cause-related, like recent Earth Day-related campaigns by The North Face and Silk — albeit in a tongue-in-cheek way that satirizes what the brand is known for: indulgent fast-food.
The "Save the Veggies" campaign is one of Hardee's first efforts since separating its marketing from sister brand Carl's Jr. Previously, Hardee's featured scantily clad women in its ads, but it aimed for Gen Z with "Cause It Tastes Better," a campaign that teamed the QSR with the Tinder dating app. Previously, Hardee's and Carl's Jr. poked fun at competitors Taco Bell and Burger King.