“We believe it shouldn’t cost you more money to eat plant-based food and that this disparity is unfair to those following vegetarian, vegan and flexitarian diets.”
Supermarket chain Co-op has slashed the price of its plant-based burgers and sausages.
This move comes as the UK retailer unveiled a new 10-point climate change action plan to help it achieve net zero emissions by 2040.
The reduction in price is also in part to bring those products’ prices in line with their meat equivalents.
“It’s an industry-wide standard that plant-based alternatives are usually priced higher than their meat and dairy counterparts,” Co-op Food chief executive Jo Whitfield said.
“At Co-op, we believe it shouldn’t cost you more money to eat plant-based food and that this disparity is unfair to those following vegetarian, vegan and flexitarian diets.”
According to Co-op the price disparity was one of the major deterrents for consumers trying to reduce or give up meat. Its research data shows that almost one in three people intend to eat less meat and dairy than before.
In a bid to give customers cheaper ‘flexitarian’ and planet-friendly choices, the supermarket chain will invest over £1.7 million in its bid to reduce the price of 29 fresh, chilled and ambient vegan products.
It has also reduced the prices of some of the products in its vegan range Gro up to 50%.
For instance, GRO Vegan Sausages are down from £3.00 to £1.45, GRO Meat-Free Burger is down from £3.00 to £1.35, and GRO Meat Free Mince will now sell for £1.75 rather than £3.00 helping a family choosing vegan alternatives save more than a hundred pounds a year.
Other lines in the price cut investment include GRO Vegan Spicy Squash Cauliflower & Chickpea Pie (was £2.50, now £1.55), GRO Vegan Meatballs (was £3.00, now £2.30) and GRO Katsu Curry ready meal (was £2.95, now £2.75).
“It’s Co-op’s ambition to make our plant-based range, GRO, even more accessible to our members and customers, helping them make decisions that collectively will have an impact on the world we all share,” Whitfield added.
“Emissions from our operations and our own-brand products are where we have the greatest responsibility and can make the biggest difference.
“This move is a step in the right direction and we encourage other retailers and brands to consider making the change too.”
Lynne Elliot, the chief executive of the Vegetarian Society, applauding Co-op for its price parity move, said: “This is brilliant news from Co-op, and we support any move that makes plant-based food more accessible with fewer barriers to purchase.
“Eating a plant-based diet is one of the best things you can do to help reduce your carbon footprint and it’s delicious.”
Co-op climate change plan
Apart from making plant-based food more accessible, the ten-point climate change blueprint also includess plans to switch the supermarket’s 200-strong home delivery fleet to electric vehicles, end the use of fossil fuel heating, lower farm agricultural emissions, cut packaging, and reduce impacts from soy in animal feed.
“We are facing a monumental climate change crisis entirely of our own making. We must recognise that we are in part responsible and that we have to do more and quicker,” Whitfield said.
“Today, we are sharing the action we are taking, unveiling a comprehensive plan rooted in science.
“Now when our members buy Co-op branded products and services we give local causes a helping hand and we’ll be addressing the urgent need to tackle the climate crisis. Funding schemes worldwide to tackle carbon emissions and supporting reforestation in the UK.”
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