Free digital copy
Get Speciality Food magazine delivered to your inbox FREEGet your free copy
The trend for vegan foods has been gaining traction in the UK for some time, with a record-breaking 400,000+ people signing up to take part in the 2020 Veganuary campaign. According to new research from Mintel, more Brits than ever have turned towards vegan diets since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The leading market intelligence agency revealed that 25% of Brits aged between 21 to 30 say that the pandemic has made a vegan diet more appealing. And it’s not only Millennials, the research also showed that a vegan diet is proving more attractive to 12% of all Brits, with numbers rising to 22% of Londoners.
Overall 23% of British consumers are also consuming more fruit and vegetables since the start of the pandemic, and almost one in five say that the outbreak has led to them adding more nutrients to their diet that support the immune system.
Alex Beckett, associate director of Mintel Food & Drink, explained, “People want the world to change for the better right now and they are searching for ways to show compassion. For consumers struggling to know how to make a positive difference, cutting out animal protein may be seen as a way of tackling the climate crisis, showing compassion for nature, and boosting their own nutrient intake.
“Even before the spread of COVID-19, we were seeing a growing interest in plant-based food and drink across global markets. It may well be that the pandemic is accelerating this trend.”
During the pandemic, customers have also faced stock shortages and long waits for delivery slots from the multiples, with many turning to shopping locally. Hank’s Deli & Shop is a vegan supermarket in Suffolk, which has been in business for the past year. Co-owner Geoff Bligh told Speciality Food that they have had plenty of non-vegan customers that have been eager to try a vegan diet and have discovered products at their store for the first time. He said, “We’ve had a lot of people coming into the supermarket now and saying “I considered it” or “I tried and found it difficult” and now can walk through the store and realise that everything in here is vegan.” He adds, “We’re able to do same-day delivery for people, so we have got a lot of new customers and lots of non-vegan customers too.”
Stay connected and receive the latest news, analysis and insights from our industry's top commentators