British consumers saved £6.7 Billion last year by eating inexpensive, plant-based foods instead of animal products—further reducing British meat consumption.
Researchers estimate that more than 12 million meat eaters consumed less pork, beef, lamb, and chicken in 2019 compared to previous years. That shift saved them around £550 each.
The research was commissioned by the popular British vegetarian brand Linda McCartney’s and surveyed 2,000 adult consumers.
Moving into 2020, more than one-fifth of participants intend to reduce their intake even further. Some will make initial reductions, if not removing animal products entirely.
Is a Plant-Based Diet Expensive?
The research also revealed that for 28 percent of participants, saving money is a big motivator. Fifty-one percent believe that meat is too expensive, and 44 percent think that a meat-free lifestyle is more affordable than ever.
Miguel Barclay—the author of “One Pound Meals” (2017)—has teamed up with Linda McCartney’s to advise how best to go meat-free in an affordable way.
“There can be a real misconception around the cost of eating meat-free,” says Barclay. “However, this research proves that there is actually a lot of money that could be saved by making a veggie or vegan commitment.”
“I believe in showing people how to make delicious, affordable food,” continues Barclay. “Meat-free options are just the same; it doesn’t need to be expensive or fancy, to be satisfying and tasty.”
British Meat Consumption
The study found that participants who still eat meat do so an average of four times a week. One in six eats meat every day of the week. A quarter of the participants said they feel that they eat “too much” meat, and six out of ten revealed they have been thinking about reducing their consumption for some time.
Just under 50 percent of participants said that they are now more open to an entirely meat-free diet. While around three-quarters of meat-eaters who tried meat-free products enjoyed them. Approximately four out of ten participants are planning to be more or completely meat-free in 2020.
Flexitarianism—following a plant-forward but not entirely plant-based diet—is increasingly popular in the UK. According to British supermarket chain Sainsbury’s, around 91 percent of Brits are now flexitarian.