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Plant-based food at Christmas – Tesco increases its offer as trend keeps growing

Vegans will have more plant-based Christmas centrepieces and festive treats to choose from than ever before at Tesco this year.

Plant-based food continues to be the UK’s biggest culinary trend of the last decade with demand soaring in the last year by 37 per cent (IRI data Nov 2019).

Since launching its own plant-based brand, Plant Chef, a few months ago Tesco has seen demand for vegan foods in general soar by 40 per cent.

A third of Christmas hosts say they’ll cater for an alternative diet on the 25th while a fifth (21 percent) say they’ll be hosting vegetarians and vegans.*

And one in ten 18-34-year-olds say they’ll go vegan this Christmas – twice as many as in 2018. When looking across the generations, those below 34 are nearly twice as likely to cater for a vegan than 35-54- year-olds (10 percent vs 6 percent last year) and are three times more likely than those aged 55+ (10 percent vs 3 percent last year).*

As a result of the increasing demand Tesco has widened its range from four to six Christmas plant-based centrepiece dishes in the last year.

These are:

  • Finest Half-Stuffed Butternut Squash with mushroom, butternut squash and sweet Potato infused with Madeira wine
  • Finest Butternut, Mushroom and Chestnut Wreath – A crisp filo pastry wreath, hand-filled with sweet butternut squash, mushrooms and chestnuts and flavoured with Madeira, white wine, brandy and winter spices
  • Vegan frozen Wellington lattice - filled with savoury soya protein, topped with mushrooms and decorated with a lattice top made from flaky puff pastry enriched with a thyme topping.
  • Finest Sweet Potato And Red Cabbage Christmas Log with seeded stuffing
  • Frozen Nut Roast - made with carrots, pecan nuts, peanuts, maple sauce, cranberries and spices in a mulled wine and cranberry sauce
  • Finest Carrot and Thyme Tarte Tatin – Hand-layered sweet, sticky carrots and caramelised onions in a light and flaky pastry tart topped with a rosemary and sherry glaze.

Derek Sarno, head of Tesco’s plant based innovation said:

“The quality and quantity of plant-based food is developing so fast that just by having the option is appealing to everybody – not just vegans.

“Only a few years back the best thing a vegan or vegetarian attending a family Christmas dinner could hope for was a nut roast but this year they are being spoiled for choice with some truly mouth-watering creations.

“Two years ago we had just a couple of Christmas plant-based centrepiece dishes – this year we have six in order to cater for the growing demand which has rocketed by nearly 40 per cent in the last year.

“That really underlines how the plant-based food revolution has become the fastest growing culinary movement this decade.”

ENDS

Note to editors:

*Information taken from The Tesco Christmas Report 2019. Tesco used Opinium research for the period 30 October to 1 November 2019, pulling a nationally representative sample of 2,010 people.

Tesco’s plant-based food journey to date:

2018

Jan – Tesco becomes the first UK retailer to launch an own label plant-based range, Wicked Kitchen, with 20 plant based meals, sandwiches and salads

March – Innovative Swedish vegan experts Oumph! launch three products at Tesco - all made from a soya-based meat alternative

May – Dutch vegetarian/vegan manufacturer Vivera launches the UK’s first ever vegan steak at Tesco as well as a range of other foods

September – Oumph! extends its Tesco offering and introduces a chilled vegan pizza to UK high street stores

October – Wicked Kitchen launch an additional 26 foods including the UK’s first vegan sausage roll

November – Launch of Beyond Burger

2019

April – Tesco widens appeal of vegetarian and plant-based foods to flexitarian diners by creating new fixture in the meat aisle of some of its larger stores.

Sept – Launch of new Plant Chef range.

October – Launch of extended Wicked Kitchen range.

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