Demand for meat-free dishes on the rise this Christmas


Caterers, chefs and managers are being urged to pay more attention to vegetarian dishes on their menus this Christmas, as new research has revealed that over half of diners feel there is a lack of choice when it comes to eating out during the festive period.

The research, commissioned by Vegetarian Express, has shown that 54% of people think there are not enough vegetarian options on menus at Christmas, rising to 65% among women.

When asked how many vegetarian dishes customers would like to see when dining out at Christmas, almost two thirds (62%) feel two or three meat-free options would give a better choice, while more than a quarter (27%) think this doesn’t go far enough and demand four or more.

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Notably, it’s the 18-34 year olds who are driving this demand for a greater selection, with over a third (34%) thinking there should be four or more meat-free options available.

Commenting on the findings, Will Matier, managing director at Vegetarian Express, says: “Christmas is a vitally important period for caterers, generating more revenue than at any other time of the year. Plus, with gross profit margins typically greater on vegetarian dishes than on meat options, giving a little more thought to vegetarian menus will make for an even more profitable Christmas.

“Our research proves that caterers must focus on offering a greater choice of vegetarian options to attract more diners, especially in light of the increasing demand from one the largest spending demographics.”