In response to the “new normal”, almost a quarter of UK consumers are cutting down on animal products, according to new research by the Vegan Society. With the Covid-19 pandemic a primary driver, 17% of Brits have actively reduced meat consumption, while 8% have cut back on dairy and/or eggs.
The latest research into how shopping and eating habits have changed since the start of the pandemic finds that almost one in four Brits (23%) have minimized their intake of animal products. These figures also include 6% of consumers who have cut back on fish and seafood. Over half (53%) of the reducers revealed they had tried meat alternatives over lockdown, with the majority (78%) stating they would continue to purchase.
Pulses and tofu were also popular products for meat reducers. The top three reasons for cutting back on animal products included health concerns (36%), environmental reasons (28%), and animal rights issues (20%). The cost of living crisis was also a significant factor. The figures, when compared with previous studies, show a steadily growing trend and back up other findings, such as a recent report revealing 50% of Brits will be vegan or vegetarian by 2040.
“All three pieces of research show how the events of the last two years have highlighted to shoppers that there are more ethical and compassionate ways we can live – and these days supermarkets are only too happy to provide them,” stated Louisianna Waring, Senior Insight and Policy Officer at The Vegan Society.