Richmond Bacon Rashers Meat free

Source: Richmond

Pilgrim’s Food Masters said it was expecting ‘robust momentum’ across the plant-based category

The plant-based category’s soaring growth means its value in the UK will reach £1bn within the next four years, according to forecasting by Richmond owner Pilgrim’s Food Masters.

The business, acquired from Kerry Group by US giant Pilgrim’s Pride last year, said it was expecting “robust momentum” across the plant-based category, which was currently worth £572m [IRI 52 w/e 5 September 2021] and would grow by at least 74% to £998m by 2026.

Driven by soaring interest in flexitarianism, Pilgrim’s said growth would be underpinned by three main drivers: appealing to families, tapping into new occasions and product innovation.

More work on the health credentials of plant-based products would drive growth among families, it suggested, alongside tackling taste concerns.

“Plant based alternatives that truly look and taste like their meat counterparts will be key to further growth of the plant-based category,” it said, citing research that claimed just 14% of parents believed plant-based foods were currently suitable for children under the age of six [Mintel plant-based report 2020] .

Snacking would drive growth into new occasions, the supplier added. Meanwhile, innovation – particularly around alternatives to proteins such as Fish, as well as new proteins such as sunflower, wheat and chickpea – were described as “the final piece of the puzzle to continue driving growth”.

“The category has been on an unbelievable growth trajectory over the last five years or so but it’s still a relatively small sector of overall FMCG sales,” said Pilgrim’s Food Masters marketing, category, innovation & sustainability director Dawn Spencer.

This meant there was still “ vast headroom for further growth”, she added. “Plant-based alternatives can no longer be an afterthought, so retailers need to ensure they are investing in a robust plant-based offering which stretches across different categories,” she said.

“As we look ahead to what’s in store for 2022, now is the perfect time for retailers to regroup and take stock of their plant-based offering to ensure they’re responding to what consumers really want. There are really clear areas within plant-based which are currently underserved by the products on the market which is something we’re excited to tackle as a business.” 

JBS launches Ozo brand in the UK

Hello OZO

Source: Planterra Foods 

The JBS-owned brand is now available in the UK via Waitrose

It comes as Pilgrim’s Pride owner JBS has been rolling out its US plant-based brand Ozo in the UK. The brand, owned by JBS subsidiary Planterra Foods, was launched in Waitrose stores nationally at the end of December, in time for Veganuary.

The chilled pea protein-based range comprises Italian meatballs, seasoned mince, and burgers and is aimed at “not only at vegetarians and vegans, but also at meat-eaters who want to introduce more plant-based options into their diet”, said Planterra.

The products also boasted a “clean list of ingredients” and were designed to have a mouth feel and taste more like meat than other products on the market, it added.

“We’re very excited to launch in the UK, as we continue to expand the plant-based category by offering family favourites that can easily be introduced into meal routines,” said Planterra CEO Darcey Macken.

“Over the past two years there has been a substantial shift in the ways that consumers view not only their health, but their impact on the environment. Ozo has been developed to meet these growing consumer needs.”