The current pandemic we are all more than a little familiar with by this point is causing an incredible surge in plant-based vegan meat sales in the United States.
COVID-19 AKA Coronavirus has increased the sale of plant-based vegan meats by 279.8% according to a new market research report created by Nielsen.
In the wake of the fear of this pandemic, U.S. consumers are choosing the plant-based vegan options over the traditional flesh-based versions that caused the outbreak to begin with.
The Nielsen report compares sales data from 2 weeks this March with the same period of time in March of last year. It shows the spike in plant-based vegan meat sales soaring by 279.8 % and 206.4% for the weeks ending on March 14th and March 7th.
Even vegan meat sales in the cooked sector grew by 27.1% for the week ending March 7 and rose to 84.6 percent in the following week.
While we’ve seen the empty aisles and shelves in grocery stores in the news or in person as a hallmark of the pandemics fear to hit consumers causing hoarding and panic buying meat products have not experienced the same rise in sales.
In comparison canned meat purchases spiked 57.9% and 187.8 % over the same period, sales of chicken for the same duration crawled up by only 4.5 % and 51.8 %. Sales for fully cooked chicken for the 2 weeks also grew marginally by 4.8% and 35%.
Overall though sales of meats have dropped likely due to the fear that animal products may contain the virus and make people sick.
Thanks to the reports of the virus originating from a wildlife market in Wuhan, China towards the end of 2019 a spotlight has been placed on the dangers of consuming animal flesh of any kind.
Along with the risk of disease outbreaks, heart disease increased cancer risks, and animal cruelty concerns the climate crisis is also at the center of the decrease in animal product sales and consumption.
Studies show that over 50% of GHG (Green House Gas) emissions come from animal agriculture. All transportation combined is around 15% in comparison to put that in perspective.
A recent report from Allied Market Research shows that developed markets such as North America and Europe have witnessed a surge in health and environmental awareness and consumers preferring meat consumption is gradually declining with a corresponding increase in the interest for meatless alternatives. The report estimated the vegan meat sector would be worth $8.1 billion by 2026.