Waitrose plant based range

Source: Waitrose

Waitrose’s PlantLiving range now spans 23 products

Waitrose has extended its plant-based PlantLiving range to make it more appealing to ‘flexitarian’ shoppers.

Twelve new products began rolling into stores and online on 1 May. The range features a selection of centre of the plate alternatives and base products for meals, as well as a selection of seasonal summer snacking products.

It includes two tofu SKUs: Organic Firm Tou (£1.95/300g) and Marinated Organic Tofu (£2.80/300g). Plant & Veg Mince (£2.60/250g) and Plant & Vegballs (£2.60/240g) offer further base products.

The range also includes Southern Fried No Chicken (£3.00/227g), No Chicken Kyiv (£3.40/250g) and No Chorizo Sausages (£2.75/280g).

Waitrose said it had updated the range – which now spans 23 products – in response to what it claimed was a growing preference among shoppers to follow a ‘flexitarian’ diet. There is no set definition, but a flexitarian is generally seen as someone who mostly eats a vegetarian diet, but still enjoys some meatfish and other animal products.

The supermarket had seen a 200% increase in web searches for canned vegetables, while searches for vegan salad recipes had increased 700% over recent months, which it said was evidence that customers were looking to add more whole foods into their diet.

Products containing less soya, as well as more beans, vegetables and pulses, were in particular demand, Waitrose said, which had influenced the composition of the range.

“Our customers are looking to consume less meat and by using PlantLiving Plant & Veg Mince, Loaded Vegetable Kebabs and No Chorizo Sausages, they can make delicious plant-based swaps without all the prep,” said Waitrose vegan and vegetarian buyer, Catherine Shacklock.

“Plant-based proteins such as tofu, have become kitchen heroes, and our new Organic Firm Tofu is made using traditional Japanese techniques – which means it is perfect to cook with and a great base for most recipes.”

Loaded Vegetable Kebabs (£2.75/260g), Garlic-filled Doughballs (£3.00/210g) and a Nduja Style Fiorelli (£3.60/250g) are among the other products in the range. 

It is completed with two new seasonal snacking items: Mediterranean Style Mini Rolls (£3.00/180g) and Curried Vegetable Mini Rolls (£3.00/180g).

“With customers prioritising whole foods, we have incorporated more vegetables into our plant-based proteins,” said Simona Cohen-Vida-Welsh, Waitrose vegan product developer.

“Our new Plant & Veg Mince and Plant & Vegballs are both made from vegetables and pulses and are extremely versatile, allowing customers to make easy and delicious plant-based meals everyday.”

Waitrose first introduced its own vegan range under the label Plantlife in 2021. It sat alongside the GoVeggie vegetarian range under the wider Holistic Living brand. However less than a year later, Waitrose was forced to relaunch the range as PlantLiving, after it was revealed an Australian company already held the trademark for Plantlife.

The launch is the latest NPD from Waitrose over the last week, following the launch of an exclusive ingredients range with chef Yotam Ottolenghi.

In April the supermarket launched a 65-strong summer range.