Blog: Dean BestFood for veggie thoughts

Dean Best | 15 September 2009

Living with a vegetarian has made me reappraise my eating habits and, although I cannot completely cut meat from my diet, I have reduced the amount I eat - by opting to follow the 'no meat Monday' idea promoted by ex-Beatle Paul McCartney.

While looking for dinner recipes last night, I logged on to Twitter (believe it or not, some of the recipes Tweeted on there, especially from Channel 4 Food).

Coincidentally, global researchers Mintel had Tweeted an eyebrow-raising fact: the amount of worldwide NPD in the vegetarian category almost doubled between 2006 and 2008. And two countries accounted for over half that NPD - India and the UK.

India's largely vegetarian diet explains part of that trend but Mintel's nugget also demonstrates how well-developed the veggie market is in the UK.

Meat-free sales were worth GBP739m (US$1.22bn) in 2008, up from GBP709m a
year earlier, according to Mintel trends and innovation director David Jago.

"Growth is stemming from areas such as ready meals, snacks, deli products and ingredients, linked to the development of more sophisticated and better quality ranges of food suitable for vegetarians," Jago says.

He adds that growing sales are due more to consumers looking to cut down meat rather than follow a strict vegetarian diet.

Food for thought, indeed.


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