Sainsbury’s Opens Meat-Free Butchers, Where Veggies Look Like Sausages & Minces
By Yimin Huang, 24 Jun 2019
A meat-free butcher might sound like an oxymoron, but this was exactly what UK supermarket giant Sainsbury’s had come up with for its recent popup concept.
No animals died for the “meat” at the UK’s first-ever ‘Meat-Free Butchers’, as its ingredients consisted of soybeans, peas, carrots, beetroot and other fruits and vegetables. Its storefront was designed to resemble a traditional butcher, with strings of “sausages” hanging in the window, except they were made of vegetables.
The three-day popup, held between 21 and 23 June, was Sainsbury’s attempt to show the different forms vegan food can take. There, the store’s “butcher,” Anthony Maynard, encouraged shoppers to try BBQ pulled jackfruit with a “sweet and smoky” flavor, steak made from soya and wheat protein and other creative variations of meatless meat.
A YouGov poll published in March this year revealed more than half of the UK population were reducing meat consumption, while strict vegetarians and vegans took up four percent and two percent respectively. The increase in demand of plant-based products and the need to increase the range of vegan food inspired this concept.
James Hamilton, a Sainsbury’s buyer in charge of developing the supermarket’s meat-free range, explained that while there was an increase in sales of plant-based food, many customers were still intimidated by unfamiliar cooking processes.
He believed presenting them with “veggie mince” might make it easier for customers to pick up more plant-based options, as people knew what to do with meat.
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London’s first meat free butchers is here! Open for this weekend only, @sainsburys have opened a pop up butchers shop selling all animal-free ‘meats’ on Bethnal Green Rd in Shoreditch. Demand has been so high since their opening yesterday that they’ve had to limit the amounts each customer can buy, and the team in store have been serving up vegetarian and vegan goodness for nonstop queues of people.
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[via Guardian, cover image via Sainsbury’s]
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