Auchan, Aldi Stand Out For Vegan Products In Portugal
Auchan and Aldi are food retailers with the best offer of vegan products in Portugal, a new report by the Portuguese Vegetarian Association (AVP) has revealed.
The finding is from the RankingVeg project, set up by AVP in partnership with the Germany's Albert Schweitzer Foundation.
The study included retailers with the biggest market presence in Portugal, namely Aldi, Auchan, Continente, Intermarché, Lidl, Minipreço and Mercadona.
Jerónimo Martins, owner of the Pingo Doce supermarket chain, declined to participate in this study.
Data was collected between May and June 2021 from 35 stores, comprising five per retailer.
Factors taken into account included the number of vegan products available within the relevant categories, such as alternatives to meat, milk, and eggs; and promotional communication for these products.
Auchan was the best positioned in the general ranking in terms of the vegan product offering, followed by Continente and Aldi, in second and third place, respectively.
In the discounter category, Aldi emerged on top, followed by Lidl and Minipreço.
Auchan led the supermarket/hypermarket rankings, ahead of Continente and Intermarche.
Of all the retailers analysed, Aldi achieved the best score in terms of vegan certification and the marketing and communications factor.
The report concluded that the production and sales of vegan products in Portugal is still in an embryonic state compared to other countries, and that there is room for a growth in supply and for an improvement in terms of diversity, quality and price.
A parallel study was also carried out on consumer perception, with over 2,000 participants.
Among those polled, 51.7% claimed they followed an ovo-lacto-vegetarian or strictly vegetarian (vegan) diet, while 30.3% considered themselves to be flexitarians – occasionally including animal products in their diet.
For consumers, Aldi emerged as the retailer with the best vegan offer, followed by Continente and Auchan.
The product categories with the highest levels of consumer dissatisfaction include vegan alternatives to ready-to-eat meals (36.6%), vegan alternatives to cheese (34.0%), and meat alternatives to hamburgers and sausages (32.6%).
Most of the respondents identified price as the main factor of dissatisfaction, with many suggesting that the cost of vegan products is still too high.
Consumers also expect more from the taste and texture and/or consistency of products, especially in the categories of cheese, meat alternatives, such as burger, sausage, tofu and seitan, and milk/dairy products.