The Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health?s Center for a Livable Future recommends cutting back on meat not just for health and the environment, but also due to concerns for animal welfare, risks to workers, and antibiotic resistance. As the numbers show, #MeatlessMondays and the flexitarian lifestyle have taken off in recent years.
New data from natural and specialty product retail sales data company Spins?shows the total market for this sector (excluding data from some stores including Whole Foods Market, Costco and Trader Joe’s) tops nearly $3.5 billion in sales. The category includes plant-based versions of meat, tofu, milk, yogurt, cheese and cream, and has grown more than 8.7% during the past two years. By comparison, general food and beverage sector growth has been just 3.7% during the same period.
Driving the growth are plant-based milks, which at $2.1 billion in sales have enjoyed 14.4% growth in total sales volume over the past two years. Plant-based meats, including meatless burgers, nuggets, tempeh, and tofu, drive over $865 million in sales, with burgers representing the largest portion of the category, and tofu leading the growth at 7% over the past two years. With major advances in flavor and Silk’s big relaunch of their Dairy-Free Yogurt Alternative, plant-based yogurts, though still a smaller sub-category, have seen growth?of?12.7% over two years.