Q&A: Top vegan stocking tips for retailers

18 January 2022, 07:37 AM
  • Discover why Veganuary continues to be a hit with consumers, and how to move beyond a simple ‘tick box’ approach
Q&A: Top vegan stocking tips for retailers

Veganuary 2022 has officially become the campaign’s biggest year yet, with more than 600,000 people signed up, surpassing last year’s total of 580,000. Although the annual event will soon be winding down, the growing flexitarian market makes this segment an increasingly valuable one year-round. We speak to two retailers to uncover their approach to boosting vegan product sales and where they think the sector will go from here. 

Paula Alcalde, co-founder of Greenbay, a plant-based retailer, shares why quality is king in vegan products

What are your expectations for Veganuary 2022 and beyond?

Veganuary, and the vegan movement itself, has been growing exponentially in the past few years, and we expect this year to be the biggest year for the campaign. There are more and more people joining the cause every year, and as a result, vegan options are gaining awareness for both vegans and non-vegans alike. 

What tips can you offer for shops that aren’t vegan specialists?

The best way to capture the attention of the growing vegan and vegetarian market is to offer new and innovative, good-quality alternatives to traditional animal products. In the past few years, we have seen retailers trying to simply ‘tick the box’ by offering products labelled as vegan, which can discourage people who try them from following this diet. 

In many cases, retailers that aren’t specialised in plant-based products lack the knowledge in this area or resources to outsource the products. To help solve this problem, last year we launched our B2B arm, connecting great vegan brands with retailers across the UK. Retailers looking to add vegan options to their range can get in touch with us, and we provide them with a one-stop shop with recommendations and access to great brands not available elsewhere. 

Matthew Philpott from Better Food explains how offering sustainable choices has opened new doors for growth

What are your expectations for Veganuary 2022?

We’re hoping that Veganuary 2022 will continue to shine a light on some of the ever-growing options available for people who wish to eat more plant-based food – whether that’s a full change in lifestyle or just trying out new ideas for inspiration.

Have you undertaken any special initiatives for Veganuary?

Nommm is an organisation we began working with last year, who we believe have a unique take on recipes – giving consumers a full picture of the impact of what we cook in a simple and understandable way. It felt like an obvious extension to do something for Veganuary and provide some inspiration for people who want variety as they reduce or cut out animal products with a free recipe pack.

Our customers care passionately about sustainable living, and we’re pleased to be able to help them shop for groceries in a way that minimises their impact. Better Food has been promoting organic, local and ethically sourced food for 30 years and many customers have joined us with this mission in mind.

What tips can you offer about stocking vegan products?

I think that customers are really looking for choice right now. There has been significant growth in the options out there in the market tailored to a plant-based diet, and these are growing all the time. This is a great time to introduce some new, exciting options to help customers make the changes in diet they want to. We know that demand for vegan food continues to grow – last year over 30% of our customers expressed a need for vegan products when they shop or eat at our cafés.

Learn more about the vegan trend with our explainers – click here to read them all.

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