GFI India study unveils insights on India’s plant-based smart protein sector

GFI India study unveils insights on India's plant-based smart protein sector

The Good Food Institute India (GFI India), an expert organisation, thought leader, and convening body in the alternative smart protein sector, in collaboration with Kantar World Panel, unveiled a new study on consumer awareness, trial, and purchase behaviour for plant-based meat and dairy on Wednesday. Coinciding with the global phenomenon of Veganuary, which inspires millions to try plant-based diets every January, the report sheds light on the evolving landscape of consumer adoption of plant-based alternatives to meat and dairy. With 377 products spanning 41 formats and 73 brands, the sector has witnessed rapid growth over the past few years, presenting consumers with an array of choices in plant-based meat, dairy, and egg categories.

The study reveals that while familiarity with plant-based meat and dairy is growing, with about 30 per cent of respondents aware of plant-based meat and 50 per cent of plant-based dairy, the trial rates stand at 11 per cent and 23 per cent, respectively. However, the category exhibited strong potential for market growth, as evidenced by the high repeat purchase intentions, with 72 per cent considering buying plant-based meat again and 82 per cent willing to purchase plant-based dairy again. Notably, in line with global trends of environmentally conscious behaviour, the report identifies a higher level of awareness and adoption interest among younger demographics, particularly in metropolitan areas and among non-vegetarians (flexitarians), compared to vegetarians and those in non-metro cities.

You may also like to read – India’s smart protein market is projected to reach $4.2 billion by 2030: Study

Interestingly, according to the report, consumption patterns reveal that plant-based options are currently consumed similarly to their animal-derived counterparts. However, the latter is consumed more regularly, with plant-based options reserved for special occasions. The study also states that taste remains a significant driver for conventional meat consumption, highlighting the need to further improve the taste of plant-based meat. Key barriers to wider adoption include taste, accessibility (affordability and availability), and perceptions of plant-based foods. This nuanced understanding of consumer behaviour is crucial for stakeholders in the smart protein sector to strategise and cater to the evolving market effectively.

Rajyalakshmi G, Market and Consumer Insights Advisor at The Good Food Institute India, said, “Our study with Kantar World Panel reveals key factors driving the growth of India’s smart protein sector. It highlights the importance of building category awareness and relevance for plant-based alternatives among consumers. To encourage trial and repeat purchases, it is crucial for manufacturers to focus on the trifecta of taste, affordability, and convenience. Like any new category, initiatives, including sampling, online campaigns, social media engagement, and strategic retail displays, can contribute significantly to greater awareness and broader adoption. Our goal is to empower manufacturers and industry players with essential consumer insights that can drive the advancement of the sector in India.”

You may also like to read – Walmart Foundation grantees continue to work with farmers to bring millets to the forefront

The rising interest in global consumer-focused movements like Veganuary highlights the importance of alternative proteins to enhance participation by a wider cohort of consumers. A shift from conventional proteins to more plant-based meat, dairy, and egg alternatives will be crucial for growing economies like India in addressing global challenges such as climate change, food insecurity, and public health.

The Study

Conducted in two phases, the research comprised a quantitative survey conducted with GFI India’s research partner, Kantar World Panel. The first phase involved a listing exercise to gauge awareness, trial, and repeat purchase behaviours, involving 2,535 interviews. The second phase was a deep dive into usage behaviours of households that purchased plant-based meat and dairy in the last six months.

Click here to read Agribusiness stories.
Engage with us on Telegram, X, Linkedin and Facebook.
Share on

About Mohd Mustaquim

Mohd Mustaquim is the Editor of Agriculture Post. A postgraduate in Mass Communication and Journalism, he has been covering the rural economy and agriculture sector for more than a decade.

View all posts by Mohd Mustaquim →

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

7 × = 63