Posted February 14th, 2019
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This January was great news for the aisles as shoppers spent more, and experimented with items from healthier categories.

Attributed to Veganuary, Nielsen data (reported by Talking Retail) shows that shoppers are buying more free from products, with sales increasing 17% in January alone.

Figures from the IGD show that 6% of shoppers adopted a flexitarian approach in January, cutting down on the meat they eat. According to Vanessa Henry, shopper insight manager at IGD said: “This is representative of a broader trend we see throughout the year, whether it’s just for one meal or one day a week such as Meat Free Monday. This suggests plant-based products being launched on the market now won’t just be confined to the small proportion of shoppers who identify more regularly with veganism, they will appeal to a much broader group of shoppers. Both retailers and suppliers are responding to this interest in plant-based products, launching a significant number of new and interesting alternatives.”

And as a nation, we’re seeking out even more meat alternatives.  Reports suggest that the pegan diet (a combination of vegan and paleo) is the latest food trend set to become mainstream in the next year.

Looking back on 2018 as a whole, Fraser McKevitt, head of retail and consumer insight at Kantar Worldpanel, comments: “One of the most notable consumer trends is the shift to a more plant-based diet.  Today, 1% of all households include a vegan, 5% have a vegetarian and 10% have flexitarians in their ranks.  This move has contributed to consumers eating a total of 4.4 billion meat-free dinners in 2018, an increase of 150 million meals on the year before.

“Following an indulgent Christmas period, health-conscious shoppers and Veganuary participants helped sales of fruit, vegetables and salad surge by £46 million compared with January last year.  Meanwhile, over two-thirds of customers bought an item labelled ‘free-from’* over the past month, with dairy alternatives like plant milks making up a quarter of total free-from sales.”

This is one trend that is set to get explode in 2019, which is great news is you are a start up brand offering a vegan product in your range!

If you are interested in learning more about marketing for your food or drink brand, please email for more information on how our Elevation Marketing programme for SME’s in the food and drink industry could help you!