UK – The plant-based food and drinks sector in the UK will from now on start speaking in one voice following the formation of the Plant-based Food Alliance UK by some of the leading players in the industry. 

Backed by Alpro, Oatly, ProVeg UK, Upfield, and The Vegan Society, the Alliance is on a mission to make the UK a global leader in plant-based food and drink. 

The Alliance, which is expecting to expand rapidly, will be developing a UK plant-based food charter to outline how businesses and government can work together to support the uptake of plant-based diets.  

It will also be campaigning for transparent environmental labeling of food and drink products so that consumers can understand the relative benefits of plant-based compared to animal-based options. 

As plant-based food continues to trend at number 2 in Innova Market Insights trends for 2022, the alliance has given itself a mandate of keeping plant-based foods in the minds of consumers.   

It has committed to advocating for public health campaigns to explain the health and environmental benefits of plant-based meals and how people can introduce more plant-based food and drink into their diets. 

“We’re already seeing people introducing more and more plant-based meals into their diets, driven by a desire to improve their health and to reduce the environmental impact of their food choices,” says Marisa Heath, CEO of the Alliance.   

“We have an exciting opportunity to support this people-powered transition to a more sustainable, healthier food system and to attract more innovation and investment in the UK as we do so.” 

The alliance has also promised to agitate for more support for farmers to help them transition to meet the growing demand for plant-based foods. 

With personal health and global sustainability proving to be strong drivers of consumer choice, plant-based R&D has refocused from mimicking meat, fish, and dairy to optimizing and diversifying options. 

The desire for diet variation is further boosting interest in plant-based beyond the traditional vegan and vegetarian sectors, leading to a 59% increase in launches of new plant-based products in the year to August 2021. 

Producer-led initiatives such as the plant-based alliance in the UK will only add to the overwhelming support that the sector has been receiving by both investors and consumers. 

Just recently, the Good Food Institute awarded US$5 million to boost research into alternative proteins – a “powerful and scalable climate solution” that lacks critical funding.   

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