UK supermarket Sainsbury’s is expecting meat sales to plummet in the coming years, so it’s planning to fill shelves with vegan alternatives in its place.
The chain has launched 26 plant-based alternatives following a boom in veganism and flexitarian diets.
The supermarket said it is exploring ways to make meat-free options popular and accessible, while giving people more choice and ideas.
James Hamilton, a plant-based buyer for the supermarket, told The Telegraph the move was in response to the expectation that demand for meat will continue to decline.
He said: “We were looking at as a business the challenge we face in the future, if we sell less and less meat what do you backfill it with. So we are supplementing our ranges with alternative proteins and plant based ranges. We are interested to see what happens.
“People will even if they didn’t buy it will be thinking – is there a different way of doing things.
“We are appealing to different people than those who shop in our plant based section.”
Voted the best supermarket for vegans at the 2018 Vegan Food UK Awards, Sainsbury’s said it has seen an 82 percent increase in customers searching for vegan products online.
It’s also seen a 65 percent increase in sales of plant-based products as more customers consider a plant-based or flexitarian diet.
The decision to place the vegan meat alternatives right next to the animal equivalents has divided opinion.
Some worried about contamination, with one Twitter user suggesting plant-based produce should be kept in its own aisle.
But others praise the move for normalising and bringing veganism into the mainstream and encouraging meat eaters to consider other options.
What do you think about vegan products being placed next to meat? Tell us in the comments below!
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