Meatless Farm sales jump 149 per cent thanks to vegan demand

Plant-based food company, Meatless Farm, has been named the fastest growing brand in the meat alternatives sector.

Morten Toft Bech, founder of Meatless Farm, gets busy in the kitchen

Meatless Farm recorded a 149 per cent leap in sales in the 12 weeks to 25 January 2020 compared with the same period in 2019, according to data from industry analysts Nielsen.

Leeds-based Meatless Farm, which only launched its products in supermarket shelves in October 2018, was also identified by market researchers Kantar as the fastest growing meat alternatives brand in the UK, a sector which is growing at 10 per cent a year.

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Meatless Farm is now available in major retailers such as Morrisons and Sainsbury’s, as well as in leading foodservice chains, and has expanded internationally, notably in North America with a national rollout in Whole Foods Market Stores.

Kantar reported that 91 per cent of shoppers have tried meat free products in the past year, driving the 10 per cent growth in the meat alternatives market.

Meatless Farm said it was the standout performer in the top 10 brands in the sector.

Morten Toft Bech, founder of Meatless Farm, said: “More and more people are looking to reduce the amount of meat they eat, both for health and environmental reasons, and Meatless Farm is at the forefront of this change.

“Whether you are vegan, vegetarian or flexitarian, our range is suited to those who want to improve their eating habits, while still enjoying food that their meat-eating friends or family would recognise.”

Meatless Farm said it spent over two years blending, researching, experimenting and trialing different recipes and ingredients to create its range.

Now it said it has become a serious contender in the global, plant-based market, alongside US groups, Impossible Foods and Beyond Burger.

The 149 per cent jump in sales only accounts for retail sales and doesn’t include pubs and restaurants, which are now closed to the public.

Meatless said that while pub and restaurant sales will be impacted by the closure, retail is holding up very well.

Meatless Farm was started in 2016 by Mr Toft Bech. It aims to improve people’s health through better eating, whilst supporting the environment and reducing the world’s dependency on intensive farming.

It was recently recognised by the industry for its innovation, being awarded best emerging business at the Food and Drink Federation awards.

The firm makes plant-based, vegan mince and burgers.

Meatless Farm sells its 400g mince and two-pack 227g fresh burger patties in 464 Morrisons stores, which means it has access to 95 per cent of the nation’s Morrisons stores.

A 400g pack of mince costs £3 and a twin pack of burgers costs £2.50.

The group’s products look and taste like meat and are made from pea protein, brown rice protein and soya protein. They have the same level of protein as meat, but half the saturated fat.

The group has seen strong demand from consumers who want to eat less meat for both health and ethical reasons. Vegan and vegetarian ranges are seeing an enormous surge in popularity as consumers switch to eating less meat or no meat at all.

The meat alternative market is expected to be worth £4.1bn globally by 2020. Research shows that 42 per cent of British consumers are increasing the amount of plant-based food they eat.