Sainsbury’s launches new vegan range due to increasing demand for plant-based food

Demand for vegan food products has risen ‘substantially’

Sabrina Barr
Wednesday 27 June 2018 17:29 BST

Sainsbury’s has launched a new range of foods that are suitable for vegans following increasing demand for plant-based products.

A recent survey conducted by Compare The Market revealed that there has been a huge rise in the number of people becoming vegan in the past couple of years, with 3.5 million Brits now following a plant-based diet.

Sainsbury’s has taken note of the increasing popularity of veganism by adding 21 new products to its current range, some of which have been designed to look and taste like real meat.

The vegan mince and burgers, which have been produced by Naturli’, will be sold from the meat aisle for £3 and £2.50 respectively.

This will be the first time a supermarket in the UK has placed vegan products within the meat section.

“We’ve seen the demand for plant-based foods increase substantially in the past few months, with sales of our current meat-free range growing 20 per cent each week,” says James Hamilton, meat-free and ready meals buyer at Sainsbury’s.

“We know our customers are now seeking out more vegan and vegetarian options on shelf which is why we’re launching new plant-based products.

“We’ve also looked at customer feedback about the products they wanted to be vegan, so we’ve reformulated the recipes to make them 100 per cent meat- and dairy-free.”

The new products being sold on Sainsbury’s shelves, which have increased the supermarket’s vegan range by 10 per cent, aren’t solely being aimed at those who exclusively follow vegan lifestyles.

Flexitarians, those who eat meat on occasion but predominantly adhere to vegetarian diets, may also find the additions to the vegan range appealing.

Naturli' Foods vegan patties (Sainsbury's)

"There are already over 22 million flexitarians in the UK and we’re seeing more and more of our customers making plant-based foods a key part of their diet,” says Rachael Matthews, meat-free product development manager at Sainsbury's.

“We have a dedicated team here at Sainsbury’s working on how we diversify our range of vegetarian and vegan products, across many different supermarket aisles.

“Breadth of choice is extremely important to us and our customers and we want to provide the same variety for meat-lovers and plant-lovers alike.”

Earlier this month, the Food Standards Agency revealed that it was investigating claims that traces of pork and turkey had been found in “vegan” and “meat-free” foods sold at Tesco and Sainsbury’s.

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