Emirates notes a 154% spike in vegan meals onboard | Totally Vegan Buzz

Emirates notes a 154% spike in vegan meals onboard

Emirates notes 154% spike in vegan meals onboard
Image: Emirates

Emirates Airline has reported a significant increase in onboard requests for vegan meals over the years.

Emirates has recorded a 154% increase in vegan meal requests on its planes in the last year.

The airline, which has also been voted best airline for vegan fare, served over 280,000 plant-based meals, including more than 195,000 vegan desserts between 2021-2022.

The Dubai-based airline began offering plant-based dishes in the 1990s. Initially, vegan meals were served only on specific routes such as Addis Ababa, or across the Indian subcontinent.

But now it has embraced the ever-growing alt-meat market and vegan meals are served on other routes including to the US, Australia and on some European and UK routes.

It currently offers more than 180 plant-based recipes on board. Popular among them are  spinach and avocado mousseline with marinated tofu, multicoloured quinoa with caramelised pear and celeriac puree and lovage pesto.

Last year, the airline introduced a new gourmet vegan menu for First and Business class passengers. It includes chef-curated delicacies such as jackfruit biryani, pan-roasted king oyster mushrooms and chocolate truffle cake.

On World Vegan Day on 1 November, the airline announced a multi-million dollar investment into its vegan food options.

It introduced a  curated menu of gourmet vegan dishes into First and Business Class, while Economy Class menus were also refreshed with new plant-based options.

According to reports, the new First and Business Class menus took years in the making. The food was developed by an international team of chefs at Emirates Flight Catering, a facility situated in Dubai International Airport.

The trend of veganism

Veganism has come a long way from being an extremely niche lifestyle to now being a mainstream culture. And in recent years, it has seen a staggering rise in popularity.

Since kicking off in the UK in 2014, the concept of Veganuary—a month-long challenge to go plant-based—has developed something of a worldwide following since its inception.  In 2015, around 12,000 people signed up for it. Last year, more than 620,000 people took the pledge, while this year, according to the official website, one person is signing up every 2.4 seconds.

“The fact that I learned about Veganuary on the radio just driving down the road makes me hopeful that plant-based living is becoming more and more thought about, normalized, and easy to achieve,” Veganuary 2022 participant Anne, age 52, of Watkinsville, GA said.

“Learning the numbers Veganuary shares with us about the impact it makes on the environment and the people it reaches and how many people participate makes me feel very hopeful as well!” 

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