The strict national lockdown from April to July resulted in people watching their diet more closely and adopting flexitarian diets; cutting down on meat and dairy and eating more plant based food.
Lockdown (but also 2020 in general) has seen people become more aware of how environmental factors affect the food that is sold on our shelves and therefore there has been a huge surge in plant based or vegan diets in the UK. Sainsbury’s revealed a double figure increase in their plant based and meat free foods during lockdown, whilst Tesco became the first UK supermarket to physically set a sales target for plant based alternative foods. In addition, every top uk supermarket now has their own vegetarian and vegan range.
In 2020, the demand for chilled meat free foods has increased by approximately 50% and red meat sales in our supermarkets have declined by 4-6%. Before 2020, it is estimated that 1/3 of the UK’s population had already either cut out or cut down on red meat. This year is the firstborn year that the majority of toon UK restaurants and takeaway outlets have began to offer plant based, vegetarian or vegan alternatives. It is now the fastest growing choice of UK takeaway and more than a quarter of all UK evening meals are now Vegan.
The Global demand for plant based protein is now roughly £4.1bn and the plant based market in the UK valued at £443 million. 10% of British children are said to be either vegetarian or vegan.
Veganism is also a massively growing trend on it’s own. In 2020, the amount of UK vegans is now said to have quadrupled to over 600,000. And in the world of Sports, there are now many athletes across all sports who have switched to a Vegan diet and have credited this switch. Lewis Hamilton, Novak Djokovic, Morgan Mitchell, Victoria Pendleton, Serena Williams to name just a few.