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Business and food sales

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Please find below a selection of statistics about vegan businesses, vegan products and food sales.

Disclaimer: This is a collation of third party sources about topics connected to veganism. Some of the links are not to the original sources; we are sharing them to help journalists or researchers with their research and because they may form a helpful starting point.

General business statistics

  • A 2021 report by Bloomberg predicted that the global plant-based alternatives market could grow to $162 billion in the next decade, from $29.4 billion in 2020 (7.7% of the global market). There are a huge number of statistics available within the report: Plant-based Foods Poised for Explosive Growth
  • According to a 2020 study by MarketsandMarkets™, the plant-based meat market will be worth a whopping $8.3 billion by the year 2025. Source
  • The meat-free and plant-based dairy categories have in essence doubled in size over the past five years and are now worth just under £600m each [Kantar 52 w/e 4 Dec 2016 vs 29 Nov 2020]. Source
  • Meat substitute sales grew by 451% in the European market in the four years to February 2018. Source
  • Vegan alternative seafood retail sales in the United States grew by 23%, from $10 million in 2019 to $12 million in 2020. There is much more information about this topic in the Alternative Seafood report by the Good Food Institute. 
  • In 2019, nearly one in four products launched in the UK carried a vegan claim. In 2018, this figure was one in six. Sources: [1][2]
  • Vegan and plant-based foods are the fastest-growing category of foods that people are ordering, according to leading food-delivery companies in the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom. Source
  • Developing and manufacturing alternative proteins in the UK, rather than importing them, would create around 10,000 new factory jobs and secure 6,500 jobs in farming (to produce protein crops and other inputs). Source [p. 125]
  • Fresh meat sales fell by £328m throughout 2016, a 7.3% decline (beef sales down £72m, pork lost £62m, sausages £51m, poultry £49m and lamb £21m). Cheese went down by £70m (2.8%). Free-from foods rose by £123m, with Alpro adding another £23m. Source
  • A staggering 92% of plant-based meals consumed in the UK in 2018 were eaten by non-vegans. Source 
  • Scotland: Sales of plant milk hit £367 million in the UK in 2017 and a farming expert called this an opportunity for Scotland to use its wonderful oats and pure water to produce oat milk. Source
  • Europe: It is predicted that meat and dairy alternatives will be worth €7.5bn in Europe (including the UK) in 2025, up from €4.4bn in 2019. Source
  • Europe: extensive information regarding sales data for plant-based products in Europe is available in Plant-based Foods in Europe: How Big is the Market? by Smart Protein Project.  
  • Worldwide: The global vegan chocolate market size is expected to reach $1.41 billion by 2028, registering a compound annual growth rate of 14.8% over the forecast period. Source
  • The vegan and vegetarian baby food market was expected to jump by 10.6% from 2016 to 2021. Source 

Supermarkets

  • 566 new vegan products launching into retail for Veganuary 2021. Source 
  • The availability of vegan ready meals in UK supermarkets increased 92% between 2018 and 2021. Source
  • In June 2021, 1 in 5 ready meals are now plant-based or vegetarian. Source
  • Plant-based and vegetarian ready meals are now the cheapest ready meal options at most retailers. Source
  • Four supermarkets have greatly increased their plant-based range – ALDI by 175% (now a quarter of its ready meals range) and Tesco by 103%, while the Co-op and Morrisons are both up by more than 60%. Source
  • In January 2021, Asda supermarket trialled a fully vegan butchers counter at its Watford store with a range of plant-based meat products on offer. Source
  • In 2020, 16% of ready meals in the UK were plant-based, rising from just 3% in 2018. Source 
  • The line of 20 Wicked Kitchen vegan meals was rolled out at 600 Tesco stores at the start of 2018 and sold more than 2.5 million units in the first 20-week period ending in May 2018 — more than double the company’s sales projections. Source
  • In June 2018, Waitrose launched dedicated vegan sections in more than 130 stores after increasing its vegan and vegetarian product range by 60%. Source
  • Online grocer Ocado enjoyed a staggering 1,678% increase in sales within its 'vegan' category between 2015 and 2016. In 2020, nearly 30% of their ready meals were plant-based. Sources: [1][2]
  • Between 2018 and 2020, Aldi, Morrisons and Asda have more than doubled their plant-based and vegetarian ready-meals offer as a proportion of their range. Source 
  • Demand for vegan and vegetarian ready meals and snacks at Tesco grew by 40% from 2016 to 2017. Source
  • Sainsbury’s sales of its vegan cheeses surpassed the company’s predictions by 300%. Sources: [1][2]
  • Sainsbury’s saw a 24% increase in customers searching for vegan products online and a 65% increase in sales of plant-based products year-on-year. Source
  • Scotland: Demand for vegan haggis at Tesco in Scotland skyrocketed by 120% in 2018. Source

Takeaway

  • 259 new vegan menus were added to chain restaurants for Veganuary 2021. Source 
  • Between January 2020 and 2021, Deliveroo revealed its vegan takeaway orders shot up by 163% percent. Source 
  • Veggie Pret was turning 70% profits increase within its first two weeks of operation, despite predictions that they would drop by up to 30%. Source
  • In March 2021, Burger King UK CEO Alasdair Murdoch announced the fast-food chain plans to incorporate its menu with at least 50% plant-based options by 2031. Source

Hospitality and retail

  • In 2020 The Tofoo Co. Ltd's turnover was £14.7 million, an 89% year-on-year increase and a significant contrast to its first year of trading in 2016 which was just £600,000.
  • Adverts for vegan job roles increased by 123% in 2018. Source
  • Scotland: There were over 100 vegan businesses in Scotland in 2019, up from just a handful in 2012-13. Source
  • Waterstones has over 10,000 book titles with the word 'vegan' in them available for sale (as of October 2021) compared to 944 in August 2018. Source
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