A few years back, plant-based meats took grocery stores by storm. However, after a period of steadily rising sales, numbers are on the decline, according to Deloitte Consulting LLP.
A report from Bloomberg stated that plant-based meat sales “are down 10.5% by volume for the 52-weeks ending Sept. 4, 2022, according to data from Information Resources Inc.”
The decline in sales potentially comes in part due to inflation. The Bloomberg report suggests that “consumers have become less willing to pay a premium for faux meat. Taste and health concerns are also playing a role.”
Plant-based meat is not only suffering as a side effect of inflation. It seems that plant-based meats are also suffering from an image issue.
Deloitte surveyed 2,000 consumers “in July and found a decline in the belief that plant-based meat is healthier” or more eco-friendly than animal products and meats.
Restaurant chain Cracker Barrel faced criticism last month after adding Impossible sausage as an option for meat alternative on the menu. Their Facebook post announcing the new plant-based meat option has garnered over 11,000 comments, most of them from people being upset at Cracker Barrel for being too “woke.”
Last week, competitor Beyond Meat announced the suspension of their Chief Operating Officer Doug Ramsey on the heels of his arrest after “biting a man’s nose during an altercation.”
Chief Executive Officer of Impossible Meat Peter McGuinness stated that plant-based meat companies “have a lot of room to go,” citing that the brands are facing “low awareness” and “low understanding” from a consumer standpoint.
He went on to say that the perception of plant-based meat from the company to the consumer has “done a pretty lousy job of communicating … we haven’t done a great job.”