An increasing number of people in the UK are changing food habits and reducing the consumption of meat and dairy during COVID-19 pandemic.
According to the latest report published by The Vegan Society, one in five British have ditched meat during the lockdown, and 15 per cent of consumers reduced their dairy and egg consumption during that time.
Brits have been trying alternatives that they wouldn’t normally buy during their regular shopping. The most popular items among shoppers are: almond milk (42%), meat alternatives such as vegan sausages and burgers (38%), soy milk (36%) and pulses such as lentils and chickpeas (34%).
Matt Turner, the spokesperson for The Vegan Society, said:
“After the unprecedented success of Veganuary (which gained 400,000 pledges in January 2020) and the swathes of new vegan products hitting the shelves in recent months, it’s no surprise that many consumers have made the switch to plant-based alternatives during the COVID-19 pandemic, whether that be for convenience, cost, or concern for their own wellbeing, the environment and the rights of animals.”
The results also indicate that 43 per cent of the consumers who have cut down their meat and dairy intake, did it for health, the environment, or animal rights.
Forty-one per cent of consumers bought plant-based products because the traditional item they were looking for was not available in the shop at the time and 15 per cent opted for alternatives due to the price of meat in the supermarkets.
Additionally, half of the consumers who purchased meat substitutes declared they would buy these products again after the pandemic ends. Also, half of those who tried plant-based milk want to keep buying dairy-free milk in the future.
“Many Brits are trying these alternatives for the first time and enjoying them so much that they intend on keeping them in their shopping basket when we return to normal times,” Turner said.
“They are purchasing items that they wouldn’t have given a second look a few months ago, but are now seeing these brilliant vegan alternatives as the new normal.”
The survey was conducted on 3,682 British adults between April 10 and April 22.