The retailer said it wanted to ‘show customers the huge breadth of choice now available’ as 18 per cent of meat-eaters consider plant-based produce ‘rabbit food’.
Supermarket giant Sainsbury’s has launched a pop-up meat-free butchers to highlight ‘how far vegan food has come over the years’.
The ‘butchers’ on Bethnal Green Road, London, will offer 19 animal-free products in its three-day launch (June 21 to 23) to celebrate World Meat-Free Week, including the likes of BBQ-pulled jackfruit, chorizo-style shroomdogs, meatless bacon, veggie ribz and Moroccan vegbabs.
It will also be offering ‘porkless bites’ and ‘seven grain crispy tenders’.
The retailer said the store will replicate that of a real butchers, with purchases weighed and placed in customer’s own bags and containers.
An in-store plant-based chef will also demonstrate meat-free recipes and offer tips on how to create vegetarian and vegan dishes at home – as well as encouraging more people to try more plant-based foods.
A survey by Sainsbury’s found 56 per cent of Britons had never tried what they would consider to be a ‘meat alternative’, with 18 per cent of those who considered themselves as meat eaters branding plant-based produce ‘rabbit food’.
Buyer for Sainsbury’s James Hamilton said: “Whilst we are seeing a huge climb in sales of our plant-based foods, we know from conversations with customers that there is a sense of trepidation about cooking with them.
“So, our meat-free butchers has been launched to encourage people to get up close to the products, try what they like and take home some valuable cooking advice and recipe inspiration.
“We have carefully selected the products on offer from the growing range of over 100 plant-based products now available at Sainsbury’s, so customers are in for a real meat-free treat.”
It comes as Sainsbury’s saw a 24 per cent rise in the number of consumers actively searching for vegan products online, with a 65 per cent increase in plant-based products year-on-year.