Canadians are eating more veggie substitutes now than in 2014

June 02 2017

Plant-based proteins are expected to have an increasing presence on Canadian menus in 2017, according to a recent report.

The diets of Canadian consumers are still very much centred around beef, chicken and seafood when it comes to consumed proteins, a study of more than 1,000 consumers conducted by Technomic found.

However, consumption of vegetarian and vegan substitutes has become more regular in the past three years.

The report claims that while the share of consumers who eat these animal-free meat substitutes has remained consistent since 2014, they are eating these items more often now than they were in 2014.

Millennials are almost twice as likely to consume vegetarian substitutes compared to older generations, with the report finding that 27 per cent of consumers aged 18-34 regularly consume vegetarian substitutes, compared to 15 per cent of consumers aged over 35.

Canadian restaurants would do well to offer a wider variety of seafood entrees, with 40 per cent of seafood consumers keen to see just that. Roughly 30 per cent of chicken and beef consumers said the same too.

Almost three in five men (59 per cent) included in the study would likely order lamb and almost half (49 per cent) would likely order bison at restaurants if it was available.

Kelly Weikel, director of consumer insights at Technomic, said: “While meat is a staple of consumers’ diets, plant-based proteins will eat away at animal protein share.

“Innovating plant-based protein dishes with unique flavors and new types of meat alternatives like those made from jackfruit can help address consumers’ concerns around taste and help position a brand as a go-to destination for meatless dishes.”