Veganism is not a fad - and flexitarianism is here to stay, according to a report by leading publication Food Navigator.
The article, which says 'plant-based eating is not just a passing trend', references a recent report by Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board (AHDB) called The rise of plant-based food products and implications for meat and dairy.
The report claimed vegans see ditching animal products as 'a badge of identity or a tribal marker, much like identifying...as a 'gym bro' or craft beer nerd'.
While the AHDB has written veganism off as a fad, according to its Senior Consumer Insight Analyst Susie Stannard, it is attracting a disproportionate amount of media attention.
She believes social media is driving interest, saying: "Correlation does not imply causation but it is undeniable that the platform [Instagram] has been used very effectively as a tool to share recipes and ideology."
Responding to the AHDB's report, Food Navigator said: "The concern for the meat and dairy sectors is that this [interest] is unlikely to be a fad, with several 'anchor points' suggesting veganism and flexitarianism - which involves reduced meat consumption, often for health reasons - are here to stay."
Other experts agree: earlier this year Molly Johnson-Jones - a Senior Analyst at GlobalData Retail, told the BBC that the increasing availability of vegan items in low-cost outlets (for example Aldi) which stock a small range of items, suggests veganism's time has come.
She said: "I don't think it's a fad. I think it's a genuine shift."
And this viewpoint goes beyond the UK: recent data compiled retail sales research company Nielsen showed that the US sales of vegan food have skyrocketed by more than 20 percent over the last year topping $3.3 billion.
Michele Simon, Executive Director of the Plant Based Foods Association (PBFA) - which commissioned the data, said: "The plant-based foods industry has gone from being a relatively niche market to fully mainstream.
"Plant-based meat and dairy alternatives are not just for vegetarians or vegans anymore; now even mainstream consumers are enjoying these delicious and innovative options in the market today."
Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article are prepared in the author's capacity and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of Plant Based News itself.Reuse this content
Maria is the Editor of Plant Based News. A former magazine editor, newspaper reporter, and features writer, her work has been published by The Guardian, The Huffington Post, and various regional newspapers. She was previously the editor of Vegan Life magazine and Vegan Trade Journal. She has interviewed a huge range of people, from Prime Ministers to authors, activists, pop stars and actors, and enjoys the varied range of topics writing for PBN allows her to tackle. You can follow her on Twitter @MariaChiorando and Instagram @mariachiorando.
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