A study by Griffith University , Queensland, Australia highlights a significant shift in that country's dietary preferences, indicating a notable reduction in meat consumption among 32.2% of the population.
The study explored consumers’ views on plant-based foods and identified the main factors supporting or inhibiting them to eat plant-based meals at home or when dining out. The study was led by Dr Carla Riverola (Griffith University), in partnership with Nourish plantbased living and with the collaboration of Dr Matthew Ruby (La Trobe University), and A/Prof Stephen Harrington and Dr Ozgur Dedehayir (Queensland University of Technology).
The report reveals, health concerns are a motivation for decreasing meat consumption reflecting a growing awareness of the health risks of certain animal products, in particular red and processed meats, which have been classified by the World Health Organisation’s International Agency for Research on Cancer as being carcinogenic to humans
The study notes the pivotal role of food service establishments play in the uptake of plant-based food, with 58.6% of Australians relying on restaurants and stores to explore plant-based food options for them.
The research delved into consumer perspectives on plant-based foods, shedding light on factors influencing their adoption, both at home and when dining out. A majority of those reducing meat intake aspire to embrace plant-forward diets, incorporating varying degrees of plant-based meals.
Participants exhibited a preference for venues offering appealing plant-based dishes, considering factors such as price, ambiance, and location when selecting where to dine. However, the limited availability of plant-based options emerged as a significant barrier.
Additionally, the study underscored product availability and taste are vital drivers for consumers seeking to incorporate new plant-based options into their diets. A substantial proportion (51.5%) of Australians prioritise product availability, while taste (61.7%) and nutritional value (52.7%) influence regular consumption.
The findings suggest that Australian restaurants play a critical role in shaping consumer dietary choices, indicating a growing demand for diverse and appealing plant-based offerings within the food service industry.
For access to the report CLICK HERE