The online food platform Instacart released its report “Plant Power”, a new data-driven study of general consumer migration to plant-based alternatives. According to sales data from Instacart, every third Instacart customer has bought meat or dairy products based on plants.
According to a recent Instacart survey conducted by The Harris Poll on the food and eating habits adopted during the COVID-19 pandemic and which they will maintain over the long term, 30% of respondents said they plan to admit healthier by then Eat lighter plant-based meals.
“Plant-based foods have evolved from a niche category into a food staple in the last two years,” quoted Laurentia Romaniuk, trends expert and senior product manager at Instacart. “The search for terms such as“ plant-based ”,“ meatless ”,“ vegetarian ”and especially“ vegan ”began at Instacart, as consumers were looking for healthy meals to take at home during the 2020 embargo period. And this trend is turning into a long-term lifestyle – the popularity of the search increased even more in 2021. “
The growth of meat based on plants
In the report, Instacart analysts searched and bought data to follow the growing popularity of meat and dairy alternatives and to draw a portrait of plant-based customers. Also, highlight trending plant-based brands, chart alternative milk preferences across the country, and highlight the next big plant-based product vegans and meat eaters alike will be grilling this summer.
The herbal report addresses five key issues
1. Meat and milk alternatives are becoming mainstream
In the past three years, two vegetable categories in particular caught the attention of Instacart customers: In the “grill-friendly“ artificial meat ”category, Instacart recorded significant sales growth last year with a growth of 42% compared to the previous year in 2020; Plant-based milk alternatives also saw a significant increase: adoption rates rose by 27% by 2020.
The Fastest Growing Plant-Based Meat Brands in the Instacart Market in 2021 include: 1) Impossible Foods; 2) Alpha Foods; 3) Franklin Farms; 4) sweet earth; and 5) earth grown.
The fastest growing plant-based dairy and dairy alternatives in the Instacart market in 2021 include: 1) Laird Superfood; 2) easy; 3) Nutpods; 4) Planet Oat and 5) Mooala Organic.
Fastest growing plant-based meat and dairy brands
2. A portrait of the vegetable customer
Anonymized purchase data reveals several key traits of plant customers in the Instacart market:
They tend to be younger, except for soy milk: Plant-based customers at Instacart tend to be younger compared to regular meat and milk buyers, with more than one in three being between 30 and 39 years old. In the milk duct, oat milk buyers tend to be younger than normal milk buyers, with most of them younger than 35, while soy milk buyers tend to be older than traditional milk buyers.
Many are meat eaters: Almost half (43%) of Instacart customers who buy plant-based meat also buy conventional meat.
Related article: Who are the main consumers of plant-based meat products?
Plant-based shopping is growing fastest in the south and east: Consumers living in western metropolises like Portland, the San Francisco Bay Area, Los Angeles, and Seattle buy the most plant-based meat and dairy products by volume.
In terms of sales growth, southern metropolises like southwest Florida (+ 11%); Atlanta, GA (+ 8%); Orlando, FL (+ 8%); Tampa, FL (+ 8%); and Hampton Roads, VA (+ 7%) dominate the ranking of alternative milk growth in 2021.
In the meat aisle Pittsburgh, PA (+ 55%); Orlando, FL (+ 22%); Hampton Roads, VA (+ 20%); Jacksonville, FL (+ 18%); and Atlanta, GA (+ 18%) will buy plant-based meats for the fastest price in 2021.
3. What’s in my basket: kale or cola?
Instacart compared the carts of customers who only buy plant-based ground beef to those of customers who only buy conventional ground beef to see what else is more likely in their carts:
Customers who only buy vegetable minced meat are more likely to buy: tofu (11.8x more likely), kale (3.4x), kombucha (3.2x), sardines (1.6x), avocados (1.5x), hand sanitizer (1st , 5x), dental floss (1.4x), lip balm (1.2x), bubble bath (1.2x) and wet cat food (1.2x).
Customers who only buy traditional minced meat are more likely to buy: Sauce mix (3.9x more likely), canned noodles (2.5x), donuts (2.4x), batter (2.3x), toaster pastries (2.2x), juice Boxes (2.2x), cola (2.2x), chocolate milk (2.2x), iceberg lettuce (2.1x) and disposable plates (1.8x).
Vegetable consumer migration continues
4. Team oats or almonds? The vegetable milk war is raging
Almond milk slightly dominates plant-based milk sales in the Instacart market and is also the product that first-time plant-based customers get the most in the digital aisles:
When 100 Instacart customers put a herbal item in their shopping cart for the first time: 20 almond milk, 17 non-dairy cheese, five tofu, five vegetarian burgers, four oat milk, three non-dairy yoghurts, three prefer almond butter, two choose coconut milk.
However, a growing list of other milk alternatives is starting to question almond milk’s leadership in the plant-based milk war, depending on where you live: In the West and Southeast, consumers buy more pea milk than the national average, while coconut milk stands in the Pacific Northwest and oat milk trends in the Northeast .
In the Midwest, Central Atlantic and part of the South, consumers buy more soy milk and almond milk than the national average.
5. Jackfruit: The Next Big Crossover?
Instacart data shows that plant-based customers have also considered another meat alternative – jackfruit. As a result, Instacart customers launched jackfruit at a 50% faster pace in 2020 and the popular meat rep continues to grow through 2021.
“We expect consumers to diversify their summer grills with more vegetable proteins this year,” says Romaniuk. “If jackfruit adoption rates continue to rise, as they did during the pandemic, a lot more consumers will be pairing pulled jackfruit with their vegan plant-based sausages and burgers this barbecue season.”
This survey was conducted online in the US by The Harris Poll on behalf of Instacart from February 25 to March 1, 2021 of 2,038 US adults aged 18 and over. This online survey is not based on a probability sample, and therefore an estimate of the theoretical sampling error cannot be calculated, the company said.