Farming News - Veganuary doesn’t impact meat & poultry sales

Veganuary doesn’t impact meat & poultry sales

21 Feb 2019
Frontdesk / Livestock

Veganuary doesn’t impact meat, fish and poultry sales

The first report for 2019 from Kantar Worldpanel revealed no drop off in sales of meat and poultry in the 12 weeks up to 27 January and despite all the press around Veganuary, overall volumes for meat,fish and poultry (MFP) did not fall year on year.

Although there was a lot of positive healthy intent, the industry has not seen a huge change in purchasing trends in their markets. Although there is a rise in plant-based sales, it isn’t just taking from primary and processed meats. Health conscious shoppers are helping to drive produce sales, but not hitting the MFP markets to the level as might have been expected.

Nathan Ward, Business Unit Director, MFP, explains: “Christmas is still lurking in the figures, but despite the media profile of Veganuary, the impact on our market is relatively low. As mentioned in our last update, there is limited evidence of us becoming a nation of vegetarians and vegans, with only beef, lamb and turkey seeing volume declines in the latest period. Processed products have seen a slightly stronger decline, with bacon the largest driver of this volume loss as we see 4.2 million fewer trips containing bacon. When we focus on the last four weeks when Veganuary was running, we’ve seen flat volumes for primary meat and poultry, with fish still in strong growth, so any impact is minimal on the core categories. What we are seeing is the continued impact of uncertainty and retailer price wars driving down prices and causing shoppers to be more conscious of their spending”

Ward, adds: “The decline of beef volumes has been driven by steaks which are down 9.7%, with 420,000 fewer shoppers and 2.1 million fewer trips this year. Hopefully the in-store activity for Valentine’s Day will help turn around this performance. Roasting volumes continue to fall, but this is part of a long-term decline for roasting joints overall. Lamb continues to see the core roasting joints decline (leg -4%, shoulder -3%) and lamb chops down 8%, with fewer shoppers the key driver of these sectors. Chicken continues to drive volume and pull away from red meat volumes, with 390,000 more shoppers and 2 million more trips. Legs and breasts continue to drive growth attracting 470,000 more shoppers to breasts and 280,000 more to legs.”

“2019 is already full of surprises, with Veganuary not hitting as hard as the press would lead us to believe and the promise of an eastern freeze not materialising everywhere. We know that events drive performance and interest in our markets, I look forward to seeing the impact of Valentine’s Day on the next update in four week’s time.”