According to the 2022 State of the Marketplace: Food Service report compiled by the trade group Plant Based Foods Association (PBFA) and published in July 2023, 95% of US food service operators offering plant-based foods and beverages anticipated sales to either increase or remain stable in the coming year and four times as many foodservice operators planned to increase plant-based options in 2023 than to remove them.

The report shows that nearly half of all restaurants in the US offered plant-based options on their menus in 2022, with a 62% increase in plant-based menu items over the past decade. The report also found that half of the population consumed animal products fully, while the other half were either mindful of their intake (47%) or did not consume these products at all (3%). Gen Z and Boomers were more likely to limit the consumption of animal products, while Millennials were more likely to consume them. Overall, a third of consumers used plant-based dairy alternatives at least once a week, with veggie-based proteins and meat alternatives following closely behind. A little over a quarter of US home meals were entirely plant-based, while 19% of meals eaten outside the home were entirely plant-based. 

The report concludes: “Overall, the state of plant-based foods in the food service industry is incredibly promising, with high potential for sustainable growth and increased market share. The data from both consumers and food service operators highlights the rapidly increasing popularity of plant-based options across a wide range of segments, with notable growth in plant-based meat categories like beef, chicken, and seafood. Looking to the future of the plant-based foods industry, it’s clear that the food service world offers stability and reliability as a platform for plant-based food companies seeking long-term success in a rapidly-evolving sector.”

Hannah Lopez, Director of Marketplace Development at PBFA, told VegNews, “Our research also shows that the importance of convenience continues to grow, which demonstrates the potential for further success in the food service environment. The path to a healthier and more sustainable future is being paved, one plant-based meal at a time.”

“Originally from Catalonia, but resident in the UK for several decades, Jordi is a vegan zoologist and author, who has been involved in different aspects of animal protection for many years. In addition to scientific research, he has worked mostly as an undercover investigator, animal welfare consultant, and animal protection campaigner. He has been an ethical vegan since 2002, and in 2020 he secured the legal protection of all ethical vegans in Great Britain from discrimination in a landmark employment tribunal case that was discussed all over the world. He is also the author of the book, ‘Ethical Vegan: a personal and political journey to change the world’.