Plant-based meat products served out-of-home grow by almost 50% across Europe’s ‘Big 5’ countries

Nov 29, 2023
  • Sizzling 90% growth for plant-based burgers, while sales of sandwiches fall
  • Annual consumer spend finally exceeds pre-COVID 19 levels, but visits to OOH hospitality venues remain lower at -10%
  • 25% of Europe’s Big 5 population follow a flexitarian diet – a trend that is set to grow in 2024


BRACKNELL, UK – 8 November 2023 – According to research from Circana, the leading advisor on consumer complexity that formerly traded as IRI and The NPD Group, the trend towards eating alternative plant-based meat protein products in out- of-home (OOH) eateries, such as quick-service restaurants (QSR), cafes, pubs and bars has increased by 48% in servings compared to 2019 across Europe’s ‘Big 5’ countries. While in other food protein categories, the number of total product servings declined, including Beef (-5%), Pork (-16%), Chicken (-5%), Fish/Seafood (-13%) and Other Meat (-20%).

Typically made from ingredients such as soy, peas, lentils and mushrooms, plant-based products have gained popularity in recent years as fast-food chains and restaurants throughout Europe cater to growing consumer demands for sustainable, healthier and cruelty-free menu options. When asked about factors influencing their choice of where to eat out, 45% of consumers overall said they are more loyal to restaurants that care about sustainability, with Italy voicing the strongest concern (56%) followed by Spain (49%) and the UK least concerned (38%).

Burgers buck the trend

Compared with other protein categories, plant-based meat has shown the strongest growth across all formats since 2019. The overall number of servings across each protein category has dropped with one exception – burgers. While the number of servings in other formats, such as sandwiches and wraps, have declined, the burger has shown solid growth (Beef +4%, Chicken +16%, Fish +11%, Other Meat +14%).

Despite the overall decline in visits to OOH venues, plant-based burgers grew significantly by +90% during year ending August 2023 vs 2019, and +20% year-on-year ending Aug 2023, representing a quarter (25%) of the total contribution made to growth in burgers.

Please read the full article here.

Source photo: Kent Wild Life Trust

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