TikTok is partnering with Virtual Dining Concepts to launch “TikTok Kitchens”, a service that will deliver food that has gone viral on its app, to customers across the US.
A total of 300 TikTok Kitchen locations are planned for March 2022, with 1,000 expected by the end of next year. These locations will operate out of chain restaurants like Bertucci’s and Buca di Beppo and follow the popular ghost kitchen model, where restaurants operate without a physical storefront and only offer delivery or drive-through.
The TikTok Kitchen menu will be based around the app’s most viral food trends such as baked feta pasta, pasta chips smash burgers and corn ribs. The menu will also be monitored and adapted based on what is currently popular among TikTok users.
“Look, you have a platform with a billion viewers monthly who are constantly engaged, as the numbers show,” TikTok Virtual Dining Concepts president Robert Earl told Bloomberg. “It’s the first time there’s a brand like this out there — an audience of hundreds of millions of people.”
Customers will also be able to place orders for TikTok Kitchen through Grubhub, and prices will be “comparable to other Virtual Dining Concept brands,” Earl added.
A portion of the proceeds from TikTok Kitchen will go towards the original makers of the dishes.
“Proceeds from TikTok Kitchen sales will go to both support the creators who inspired the menu item and to encourage and assist other creators to express themselves on the platform in keeping with TikTok’s mission to inspire creativity and bring joy to its users,” TikTok told TechCrunch.
TikTok has not stated how long the initiative will run for, but revealed to TechCrunch that they aim to highlight the creativity and quality of food on TikTok rather than enter the restaurant space competitively, describing the endeavour as a “campaign.”
Food related TikTok content, under #FoodTok, is an increasingly popular section of the app, with its videos achieving over 11.5 billon views as of December.