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Arby's Is Selling Its Meat by the Pound to Satisfy an 'Unmet Need'

Our roast beef king is blessing its kingdom.

DEUTSCHLANDREFORM/SHUTTERSTOCK
DEUTSCHLANDREFORM/SHUTTERSTOCK

Contrary to popular belief, Arby's is not a grandpa sandwich. The fast food chain is an innovative powerhouse, with a willingness to fail at menu items like pork belly if it means maintaining the boldness responsible for its diverse core menu. That's why we're honored -- but not surprised -- by Arby's recent decision to sell its meat products, sans bread, directly to consumers. 

It was only a matter of time before Arby's once again challenged our fundamental consumer belief systems. According to CNN Business, the company has been selling roast turkey, ham, and corned beef in half-pound and pound packages at nine Atlanta-area locations since July. Folks in that area can order half a pound ($4.99) or one full pound ($8.99) of meat through the locations' drive-thrus. 

Arby's Chief Marketing Officer Patrick Schwing told CNN that the offering's not a gimmick, but an attempt to meet an "unmet need."

"We never felt compelled to do it until now because we know we can deliver a high-quality product with a great convenience versus going into a deli or grocery store," said Schwing. The meats will be available for sale until the end of September. 

With COVID-19 affecting production and distribution of groceries -- as well as the level of comfort folks feel going into a large store -- the chain's meats are more valuable than ever. Schwing also mentioned that consumers have wanted this "trial" for a while now, suggesting that we may see more of Arby's by-the-pound sales, perhaps nationwide, in the future. 

"We're not sure that everyone fully appreciates the quality and preparation of our products," Schwing said. "That's why we're showcasing the meat without the other accoutrements." 

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Ruby Anderson is a News Writer at Thrillist. Send your tips to randerson@thrillist.com.