Market & Trends

Ipsos Survey: A Huge 73% of Chileans Would Consume Plant-Based Products

Market research company Ipsos, along with non-profit Vegetarianos Hoy, has published a report titled “Public Opinion Study: Plant-based Foods”, regarding the knowledge and consumption of meat-free foods in Chile.

The survey reveals that 73% are likely or very likely to consume a plant-based product of equal or better nutritional quality than the animal-based alternative, an increase of 12 points compared to the previous survey. In addition, 72% would buy plant-based products at similar or even lower prices than animal-based products.

The plant-based situation in Chile

Interest in plant-based foods is growing in Chile. For example, as we reported in January, product sales in the Horeca segment grew by an impressive 41% in 2022.

Sadly, however, the Chilean government recently passed a bill to redefine the concept of meat and prohibit meaty terms for products of non-animal origin. Plant-based producers face challenges to label and market their (healthier, more sustainable) products, in a country that has been traditionally meat-oriented and seeks to safeguard the animal meat industry by any means.

Even NotCo, the country’s first Unicorn company, is having to face a legal battle at present, and will appeal in court against a ruling prohibiting the use of the NotMilk trademark.

Burger with Seitán del Bueno alt meat
Image credit: Seitán del Bueno FB

Chilean preferences

In the Ipsos report, when evaluating the composition of foods, respondents found the term “plant-based” (22%) and “plant protein-based” (21%) most attractive when talking about products free of animal ingredients, followed by the words “vegan” and “vegetarian”, both with 12%.

Regarding the main reasons for purchasing plant-based products, 66% favored health benefits, 29% animal welfare/ethical issues, and 27% environmental and sustainability concerns. In addition, in contrast to 2021, people who did not plan to buy plant-based products dropped from 12% to only 7%.

Regarding plant-based alternatives to animal-based products, 28% mentioned that they would be interested in nuggets or breaded products; 25% in hamburgers, and 24% said sausages and bacon. The least requested products were sauces and dressings along with prepared and frozen dishes (both with 7%).

NotCo x BK Chile nuggets
Burger King X NotCo nuggets, Image supplied by BK Chile

Regarding the labeling of products of vegetable origin, 68% strongly agree or agree that they should be required by law to specify their origin (e.g., “lentil burger” and not just “hamburger”). On the other hand, there is no clear consensus on the use of the terms “vegetable meat” or “vegetable milk”, in both cases the percentage in favor and against is equal (38%).

Alejandra Ojeda, manager of Ipsos Chile stated that “in the last year, one third of the people consulted indicated having tried a vegetable product for the first time, and also seven out of ten people declared that they were likely to buy them in different scenarios”.

a range of vegan products at a supermarket
© FB Vegetarianos Hoy

Ignacia Uribe, general director of Fundación Vegetarianos Hoy said that “it is good news for our organization that more people are willing to try plant-based options. Through our product certification, the generation of vegan options in restaurants and the Menu for the Planet campaign, among others, we intend to provide more and better options for consumers, so that it is even easier to generate this change in their diet.”

To learn more in detail about Fundación Vegetarianos Hoy’s campaigns, visit vegetarianoshoy.org.

We at vegconomist would like to congratulate the foundation on its 11th anniversary, yesterday 5th June. Keep up the amazing work in the protection of animals considered as production animals.

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