“Plant-based diets are on the rise in all regions of the world, and consumers are becoming increasingly aware of the link between climate change and food choices.”
New consumer research has found that four out of 10 consumers worldwide think most people will ditch meat for plant-based food in the next decade.
They surveyed almost 30,000 consumers in 31 markets around the world across healthy, sustainable, and equitable food provision. The results were presented in the second edition of the Grains of Truth series.
Key findings include 42% of the respondents claiming that in the next 10 years most people will “definitely” or “probably” be eating plant-based food instead of meat. Furthermore, the belief is stronger in younger people as well as those living in Africa and Asia. Meanwhile, North Americans and Europeans are the least optimistic about a large-scale shift toward plant-based eating.
Growing interest in veggie foods for health and the planet
Other findings include 60% of consumers polled claiming to eat healthy food most or all of the time. 22% said that they eat plant-based or vegan food, up from 17% in 2019.
The data also highlighted that a growing number of people across all age groups are interested in trying plant-based diets; 40% of Gen Z, almost half (43%) of Millennials, 37% of Gen X, and 28% of Baby Boomers revealed they are interested in following a plant-heavy lifestyle going forward.
Nearly nine in ten consumers (89%) of those asked said they prefer buying environmentally healthy and responsible food. Two-thirds (64%) of them said they are willing to pay more for such products even against the backdrop of the rising cost of living.
Food insecurity due to cost of living crisis
Another point highlighted in the report is the insecurity in food supply in the face of COVID-19, conflict, and climate change. More than half of consumers (51%) expressed their fears on the issue. The report also noted that there is considerable variation in levels of concern among countries. Latin America reported some of the highest levels of food insecurity in Brazil (73%), Columbia (72%), and Peru (69%), in addition to Kenya (77%) and Italy (64%). Meanwhile China (16%), Hong Kong (24%), and South Korea (28%) reported as being the least worried.
Consumers are becoming increasingly aware
Dr. Gunhild Stordalen is the founder and executive chair of EAT. He said: “The fact that so many people around the world are becoming more interested in eating healthy and sustainable food is an encouraging sign.
“A few years ago it would be unthinkable that 42% of people globally would believe plant-based food will replace meat inside a decade.”
He added: “But the public is starting to understand the escalating climate and nature crises and the dangers it brings to their everyday lives.”
Chris Coulter, ceo of GlobeScan, added: “Plant-based diets are on the rise in all regions of the world, and consumers are becoming increasingly aware of the link between climate change and food choices.”
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