On Tuesday, the press portal of the German Federal Statistical Office reported an increase of 37% in the first quarter of sales for vegetarian and vegan products. The remarkable increase is justified by changing consumer preferences in the course of COVID-19.
In Germany, vegetarian and vegan products could emerge as winners of the current crisis, as 20 thousand tonnes of plant-based alternatives were sold in the first quarter of 2020, compared to 14,7 tonnes in the same period last year. Meat substitutes such as vegetarian spreads, plant-based patties, or tofu products are becoming increasingly popular.
A total of €272,8 million worth of meat substitutes were produced in 2019, including vegetarian and vegan foods that appear to resemble meat. However, compared to the dominant meat industry in Germany, which produced products with a value of €40 billion in 2019, the plant-based sector remains relatively insignificant.
Nevertheless, since the beginning of the new year, meat scandals are piling up, as slaughterhouses have become the source of numerous COVID-19 infections. In addition, scandalous working conditions in the meat industry are increasingly coming to the fore.
The current crises create a window of opportunity for the plant-based sector in general, but also for the German market, considering the fact that plant-based businesses will benefit much more from upcoming innovations than the conventional meat industry.