Can plant-based products sustain momentum beyond Veganuary?

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Gousto Vegan

There has been a flurry of plant-based launches recently, including from major supermarkets and recipe box operators such as Gousto (pictured)

With nearly two weeks left in January, you’d be forgiven for feeling some serious Veganuary fatigue. The sheer onslaught of plant-based launches has been extraordinary. The level of investment shows retailers and suppliers are taking the plant-based trend more seriously than ever.

The big question now is whether that level of interest can be sustained. Themed months are great for creating buzz, but long-term consumer habits are harder to change. Even plant-based pioneers like Seth Goldman of Beyond Meat admit the level of churn out of plant-based is high - but you rarely hear about that. Few people write inspirational blogs about their decision to start eating meat and dairy again.

A key indicator of how serious retailers are about their plant-based ambitions will be any changes to merchandising strategies. The breakthrough for dairy alternatives came when retailers started selling them in the same fixtures as dairy products. If any of the major mults create the overarching ‘protein’ fixture many plant-based supporters are lobbying for, it would mark a paradigm shift.

Read more: Can US plant-based burger success Beyond Meat convince British carnivores?

Readers' comments (1)

  • Sophia Nadur

    A 'protein' fixture is not just a wasteful nod to an unhelpful fad but also an old-fashioned view of food store layouts. Consumers do not shop this way (anymore). As well, it's not linked directly to diet restrictions / culinary origins like gluten-free or Mexican. It would be better if stores were laid out by meal occasion (e.g. breakfast, dinner) which fits better the mission most folks are on when they walk through the doors.

    To help keep plant-based food & drink trends alive, stores would be better served in my view by placing vegan-certified and plant-based food & drink nearer to the fruit & veg aisles to encourage folks to fill up their baskets before they hit the regular aisles.

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