UK retailer Marks & Spencer has launched a new range of vegetarian meals in a bid to meet growing demand within the category.
The new range under the brand 'Veggie' includes 14 vegetarian meal SKUs developed by the retailer’s in-house chefs.
The range offers main meals for one, sharing centrepieces as well as side dishes, making it apt for work lunches, midweek dinners, weekend entertaining and other occasions.
The assortment includes, among others, Veggie Roasted Butternut Risotto (370g - £4) and Veggie Roasted Mushroom Ravioli (355g - £4).
Sharry Cramond, director of marketing and hospitality at M&S, said, "Many vegetarians, myself included, know all too well how it feels to look at a restaurant menu or supermarket shelves and only see a handful of meat-free options and rarely anything that celebrates vegetables.
"Our brand-new Veggie range more than meets that need and is the perfect solution for this overlooked group of foodies who want delicious, modern dishes packed with vegetables."
Research conducted by Vypr in August 2022 unveiled that more than 60% of vegetarians are unhappy with options offered in supermarkets and restaurants, the UK retailer added.
M&S’ vegan range Plant Kitchen saw sales up 23% year-on-year in its most recent financial year, with bestsellers including the Hoisin No Duck Wrap (£3.75), Green Thai Curry and Jasmine Rice (£4.50) and Nutty Super Wholefood Salad (£3.50).
The range, launched in 2019, offers a selection of dairy and meat-free lunch options, treats and meals and has since grown to over 200 products.
The UK retailer has been encouraging its 30 million customers to explore plant-based protein as part of its Sparking Change challenge.
The campaign aims to help families make the food they eat greener, healthier and more affordable, including tips on storing vegetables properly and a meal planner.
© 2022 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest private label news. Article by Dayeeta Das. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: European Supermarket Magazine.