Beneo survey finds flexitarian consumers are driving plant-based market

Flexitarian consumers are driving the demand for plant-based foods, with interest in transparent labels, sustainability, health, and exciting new food experiences.

A global survey of 11,990 consumers in 10 countries, conducted by the market research agency Insites Consulting, on behalf of Beneo (Parsippany, NJ), revealed that flexitarian consumers are driving the demand for plant-based foods, with interest in transparent labels, sustainability, health, and exciting new food experiences.

The survey found that one-fourth of consumers globally are calling themselves flexitarians, and 7% globally (10% in the US) identify as vegan, vegetarian, or pescatarian. Approximately half of the flexitarians already buy alternatives to meat (45%) and dairy (49%), with close to one-third also buying plant-based sweets such as chocolate (32%).

Compared to other consumers, flexitarians are especially interested in sustainability and transparent labels:

  • 84% are concerned about climate change and the environment
  • 86% want to know how their food is made and what is in it
  • 60% consider product quality and traceability labels when shopping

“Flexitarians are the driving force within the plant-based segment, and they are also a sophisticated target group,” said Myriam Snaet, head of market intelligence and consumer insights at Beneo, in a press release. “They are looking for a convenient way to include innovative and adventurous taste experiences in their daily diet and aren’t willing to compromise on enjoyment. Delivering on taste and texture is key to building a loyal consumer base. Thanks to ingredients such as those from Beneo it is possible for ‘plant-based’ and ‘indulgence’ to go hand in hand for a wide variety of applications.”