UK supermarket Marks & Spencer has launched a massive new vegan range, and people are absolutely loving it.
Vegans would not be blamed for passing out from shock and joy when they entered the stores at the start of the new year.
The shelves are stuffed full of vegan treats, ready meals, snack food, healthy dinners, pizzas and curries – you name it, they’ve got it.
Research by the supermarket revealed that one in five M&S customer households cooked for a flexitarian/vegetarian diet, and 60% of customers eat less red meat.
This led the company to launch Plant Kitchen – a collection of more than 60 delicious meat and dairy-free plant-based fresh meals, salads, snacks and ingredients.
The range includes everything from ‘dirty vegan’ comfort food such as Cauliflower Popcorn with Buffalo dip and Cashew Mac, to healthy meals like Mushroom Stroganoff.
It claims to feature high street firsts such as vegan Coleslaw and Potato Salad, as well as the first vegan-friendly Sourdough Pizza, using a ‘vegan house sauce’ and available in two tempting flavours; Margherita and BBQ Pulled Jackfruit.
M&S has also introduced Toban Jhan, a fermented chilli paste used in the Thai Green Curry ‘to emulate the complex, funky flavours found in Thai curries’.
There are new grain packs, tofu and soy protein, and smaller bites starting from £2 and meals from just £3.
April Preston, director of product development at M&S, said: “This is the year we’ll truly see plant-based food go mainstream
“We’re thrilled we’ve created a range which tastes as good as you’d expect from M&S, but is also vegan-friendly, so finally people don’t have to compromise on taste.”
The collection has been developed by an expert team of chefs and product developers including vegan Claire Richardson, who has created all the new prepared meals
She said: “Some people think meat-free food is dull but this couldn’t be further from the truth, its experimental and its delicious.
“We’ve created a collection that will appeal to everyone – whether you’re a longstanding vegan, want to lead a more flexitarian lifestyle or you love meat but think cauliflower popcorn sounds amazing!
“It’s all about delicious tasting food first. My favourite is the Teriyaki Tofu and Rice which is delicious and I love the kick of chilli.”
Plant Kitchen meals are the first M&S ready meals to use widely recycled trays, as well as foil trays and cardboard boxes.
M&S is also replacing its black plastic trays with widely recyclable alternatives for its healthy eating range Balanced For You from January, as part of the supermarket’s commitment to ensure all its plastic packaging is easy to recycle by 2022.
A selection of Plant Kitchen and vegan-friendly products will also be available in selected M&S cafés including sandwiches, meals and hot drinks.
What do you think of M&S’s new vegan range? Tell us in the comments below!