Tesco: targeting +300% sales in meat alternatives

Lucy Ingram
Retail Analyst

Date : 30 September 2020

Tesco has committed to a 300% increase in its sales of meat alternatives by 2025, based on its 2018 baseline figures. We look at the measures it will take to ensure it reaches this target, and its other sustainability commitments in more detail.

Four key areas of focus

Tesco will be focusing on four key areas to ensure it hits the target;

  1. Availability: introduce and grow plant-based meat alternatives across all its stores with products across 20 different categories
  2. Affordability: continue to invest in value to ensure that affordability is not a barrier to buying plant-based meat alternatives
  3. Innovation: work with suppliers to bring innovation to the category
  4. Visibility: provide a meat alternative where a meat version is featured

Tesco will be publishing the sales of its plant-based products as a percentage of its overall sales to help track its progress.

CEO Dave Lewis commented on the high target;

"We know from our experience in tackling food waste that transparency and setting ambitious targets are the first steps towards becoming a more sustainable business. Our transparency on protein sales and our new sales target for meat alternatives gives us the platform to becoming more sustainable and will provide customers with even more choice."

Retailers respond to growing demand for meat-free alternatives

Meat-free is an area we are continually seeing more development in. For example, Asda's ambient vegan aisle. Asda recently became the first UK supermarket to launch an ambient vegan destination in store, with two bays entirely dedicated to plant-based products. The launch follows a survey undertaken for the retailer which found that 17% of UK households are reducing their meat intake or following a plant-based diet. This trend has also been reflected in our ShopperVista data.

Subscribers to ShopperVista can read more about shopper's appetite for meat-free products in our shopper trends 2020 report.

Sustainability and partnership with WWF

The commitment to substantially increase meat-free sales is part of a wider range of sustainability initiatives Tesco is focusing on through its partnership with WWF, to halve the environmental impact of the average shopping basket.

This includes the Sustainable Basket Metric. The Metric measures environmental impacts of multiple categories;

  • Climate change
  • Deforestation
  • Sustainable diets
  • Sustainable agriculture
  • Marine sustainability
  • Food waste
  • Packaging waste

The two organisations are now calling on other food businesses to increase their transparency around sustainability measures.

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