Initial data shows a fall in sales of meat-free products in the first three weeks of January with just 13.7% of shoppers making the choice, according to AHDB.
As many as one million fewer households chose meat-free options this year, compared to January 2022.
7% of shoppers began ‘Veganuary’ at the start of the month, according to IGD, but this effort was not sustained with 70% returning to meat consumption by the second week. Reasons of cost and limited choice were given, showing that barriers for potential customers are the taste and price of meat-free products.
With just a 2% share, ‘meat-free’ holds a small sector of the market but, despite declines, the 31-day ‘Veganuary’ annual challenge does provide a boost for the sector.
Meat-free products have seen average prices rise by 8.9% year-on-year, which is not as rapid as meat produce at 11.9%. This increase for MFP meant the gap in price between the two categories narrowed with meat-free being only £0.13/kg more expensive.
AHDB has been actively promoting the health benefits of meat and dairy consumption through its ‘We Eat Balanced’ campaign. Over 96% of households purchased meat in January, which was worth over £1.3bn, in the first three weeks of the year.