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Looks like vegan bacon has become the flavour of the day


Looks like vegan bacon has become the flavour of the day

Why has this plant-based copy of meat eaters’ favourite delight risen in popularity seemingly overnight?

Larissa Zimberoff

There’s no denying the appeal of bacon. The pork product represents a heart-stopping 99% of the total bacon market. In 2020, US sales of the breakfast staple were $6bn through November, up 20% from the same time period a year earlier. 

But plant-based bacon is carving out space in the frying pan. Sales are up 25% — almost double that of meat-based bacon for the 52-week period ending April 18, according to data from Spins, which reports retailer data for natural and organic products. Nielsen, which aggregates data from conventional grocers, reported the entire category of bacon alternatives almost doubled in 2020, to $267m, compared to 2019.

One reason for the surge is that more alternative options are available as a new breed of bacon makers taps into popular ingredients to create the faux-pig products. They’re edging into a market that has been dominated for decades by products which have yet to deliver on metrics such as flavour, texture and satiety...

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