Tesco, the largest retailer of the United Kingdom, wants to be able to sell at least four time more meat alternative protein by 2025 as it does now with a growth in demand for vegan products, the company said.
As a part of a sustainability drive, a 300 per cent growth in sales compared with 2018 is targeted by the supermarket giant. In addition to offering products designed to emulate meat, the company also targets to sell more plant-based sausages and burgers top consumers.
According to analyst firm Mintel, by 2024, the UK market for meat alternatives could be worth more than £1.1bn.
There was a “significant impact” on environments such as the Amazon and Cerrado regions of Brazil because of meat and dairy production, Tesco said and added that these are “acknowledged as a major contributor to climate change”.
A spokesperson of the company said that in addition to selling more of the lines it already stocks, the UK’s largest retailer also targets to introduce more plant-based product lines. These include “ready meals, breaded-meat alternatives, plant-based sausages, burgers, quiches, pies, [and] party food”, the spokesperson said.
Making the alternative meat products affordable and innovative will be the focus of the company, Tesco said. Meat alternatives alongside meat will also be kept at the company’s stores “for example Richmond sausages and Richmond plant-based sausages to feature together,” Tesco said.
The company also said that it will start to make public the total sale of plant-based proteins by it as a percentage of the overall sales of proteins every year.
“Our transparency on protein sales and our new sales target for meat alternatives gives us the platform to becoming more sustainable and will provide customers with even more choice”, said Tesco chief executive Dave Lewis.
These measures for sustainability will be implemented alongside a number of other strategies that the company had jkointly developed with the environmental charity WWF.
“Tackling the environmental impact of what we eat and how we produce it has never been so urgent,” Tanya Steele, WWF chief executive, said.
Over the last 50 years, there has been a declined more than two thirds in the global wildlife populations, a WWF report said earlier this month.
“The food system has been identified as the biggest culprit, but also presents one of the greatest opportunities to reverse this trend; rebalancing our diets is a critical part of that,” Steele said.
A number of steps to reduce food waste, including a partnership with food-sharing app Oliom is being taken by Tesco.
Analyst firm Mintel said in January that a growth of 40 per cent was noticed in the sales of plant-based foods in the UK between 2014 and 2019 – from a value of £582m to an estimated value of £816m. By 2024, that value will become £1.1bn, the Mintel report predicted.
(Adapted from BBC.com)