UK diet habits shift towards healthier, plant-based and sustainable choices

UK diet habits have changed for the healthier as plant-based food choices become more popular, research reveals.

According to research conducted by Toluna, 49% of respondents said they want to consume food and drink products that are healthier, vegan, and more sustainable.

Toluna asked 1,160 adults about their food choices and preferences and found that 50% of consumers have started or continued to reduce their meat intake.

Furthermore, the proportion of meat-eaters has reduced from 83% to 78% since 2019, and 76% of respondents have bought a plant-based alternative food, a 12% increase since 2019.

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Despite 57% of people saying they feel plant-based products are healthy, 10% said that vegan foods are unhealthy, with some claiming plant-based products are highly processed, lack relevant nutrients, or include a high number of additives. The remaining 33% of consumers were unsure.

“With healthier, plant-based food and drink products an increasingly popular choice among consumers, there’s a clear opportunity for food and drink brands to be more innovative with the products they’re offering to consumers in order to make them switch brands and try a new alternative,” Toluna research director Magda Jablkowska-Citko said.

Diet trends in the UK are continuing to evolve, and now is the time for food and drink brands to capitalise on the opportunities this presents to provide products tailored to consumer preferences.

Those brands that can appeal to consumers’ curiosities with more variety, flavours, and even textures, are likely to experience the most success.”

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