New data from Mintel reveals the UK has overtaken Germany as world leader in vegan food launches. 

Key highlights from Mintel’s latest research into the global vegan food market are summarised here:
• UK vegan new product development (NPD) is flourishing. In 2018, the UK was the nation with the highest number of new vegan food products launched, toppling Germany from its number one spot – according to Mintel Global New Products Database (GNPD).
• Growing well, as many as one in six (16%) food products launched in the UK in 2018 had a vegan/no animal ingredients claim, doubling from just 8% in 2015.
• A mature and saturated market, Germany has seen wilting numbers of vegan food NPD, with the total share of food launches classified as vegan falling from 15% in 2017 to 13% in 2018.
• Overall, one in ten (9%) food products launched in Europe in 2018 had a vegan/no animal ingredients claim, doubling from 5% in 2015.

“Germany has certainly plateaued, likely driven by a flooded market with little room to grow further. The UK, by contrast, has seen a huge promotion of vegan choices”

“For a number of years Germany led the world for launches of vegan products. However, 2018 saw the UK take the helm. Germany has certainly plateaued, likely driven by a flooded market with little room to grow further. The UK, by contrast, has seen a huge promotion of vegan choices in restaurants and supermarkets. The most poignant of these is the expansion of supermarket own-label options with dedicated vegan ranges in mainstream stores. Additional space is also being freed up by UK supermarkets in the on-the-go aisles and small format stores to help promote vegan food and drink, making it easier for meat-eating consumers to try these new concepts out.
“Meanwhile, initiatives like ‘Veganuary’ and ‘meat-less Monday’ allow consumers to flirt with veganism without the long-term commitment. As more people reduce their meat intake, they experiment with more plant-based dishes catering for their flexitarian lifestyles – whether at home, on-the-go or in restaurants. Moreover, consumers are becoming more willing than ever to expand their comfort zones, push themselves to the limit with new experiences and use social media to compete with and offer inspiration to their peers.”