Research finds vegan meals 40% cheaper than meat and fish

Read Time:   |  16th December 2020

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A new study has revealed that vegan meals are actually 40% cheaper than meat and fish counterparts.


Veganism is often viewed as a privileged and expensive lifestyle. However, new research suggests that vegans spend on average 40% less on food than omnivores.

Based on weekly meal diaries from 11,000 Brits across a year, plant-based meals eaten at home cost significantly less and take one-third less time.

A main meal containing meat or fish costs on average £1.77 per person, compared to a plant-based dish which costs just £1.06 per person. Moreover, a vegan dinner was 32% quicker to prepare than a meat-based dish, at 25.4 minutes.

With Veganuary right around the corner, this new research suggests trying vegan will be easier than ever. Cost is normally a major factor in trying new food, so hopefully, these findings will encourage more people to try vegan options in the future.

Vegan households

The research, carried out by Kantar, also tracked purchases from 30,000 British households for a year. This revealed that vegan households spent 8% less on a grocery trip than non-vegan households of a similar size. The average vegan shopping basket was found to cost £16.47 while a non-vegan basket added up to £17.91.

Surprisingly, only 3.7% of food and drink spending went on meat substitute, despite a recent exponential rise in plant-based mock meats. This could suggest that perhaps those purchasing mock meats are predominantly flexitarians rather than vegans.

‘Dispel this outdated idea’

In a statement sent to Vegan Food and Living, Toni Vernelli, Head of Communications at Veganuary said:

“Those of us who’ve been eating vegan for years know that it’s great value, yet somehow the myth has persisted that veganism is expensive and out of reach for some people. 

“We now have the data to dispel this outdated idea once and for all. While some plant-based meat and dairy substitutes carry a premium, this study shows they are only a small part of a typical vegan diet and overall eating plants costs less – another great reason to try vegan this January!”

Want to try a fully-vegan diet but unsure how to start?
Here are our top vegan food swaps for new vegans.

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Vegan Food & Living

Vegan Food & Living is a magazine dedicated to celebrating the vegan lifestyle. Every issue is packed with 75 tasty recipes, plus informative features.

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