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According to Vegetarian Foods, a new Market Assessment from marketing intelligence provider Key Note, despite the recession, sales of vegetarian foods increased over the past 5 years, rising by 7.7% from £730.4m in the year ending January 2007 to £786.5m in the year ending January 2011, despite observing slow growth of 0.9% in 2010. The market has been buoyed in recent years by the rising number of people that have opted for a vegetarian diet, as well as an increase in the number of people choosing to reduce their meat consumption for health reasons following recent studies that have suggested that red meat can cause heart disease, heightened cholesterol and obesity.
Further to this, the number of vegetarian restaurants in the UK has continued to grow, with 30 premium restaurants now in operation across the country, up 50% from 2007. Improvements to vegetarian meals and recipe innovations have also made vegetarian meals much more appetising to consumers, as well as promising additional health benefits, such as a greater vegetable content, and containing ingredients which are lower in cholesterol and fats. Indeed, recent years have seen the Government grow increasingly concerned about the high level of calories in food, which is thought to have propagated rising obesity levels in the UK. As a result, a number of Government campaigns, such as the 5-a-day fruit and vegetable dietary recommendations and Change4Life programme, have been introduced in order to help people maintain a more well-balanced diet and a healthier lifestyle. The Vegetarian Society has been quick to point out the health benefits of a vegetarian diet in response, with a number of figures suggesting that vegetarians are often less likely to suffer from obesity, coronary heart disease (CHD), high blood pressure and type II diabetes, among other conditions. These factors are likely to continue to drive sales of vegetarian foods in the future, with Key Note predicting a 10.3% increase in the market over the next 5 years, reaching £882.4m in 2016.
Press enquiries: Jack Sykes at Key Note at email@example.com or 0845 504 0452. Press/review copies of the report are available on request.