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WORKSHOP WILL DISCUSS OPPORTUNITIES FOR BRITISH PRODUCERS TO BECOME LEADERS IN PLANT-BASED PRODUCT DEVELOPMENT

A one-day workshop taking place on 12th September at the University of Nottingham’s Sutton Bonington campus will discuss the opportunities and challenges for food producers of more people adopting a largely or exclusively plant-based diet.

The rise in popularity of vegetarianism and veganism offers opportunities for farmers, food producers and retailers. However, it is also causing concerns about how agriculture can react to the speed of change. Nine speakers will discuss the effects that this trend is having and explore what farmers and food producers can do to keep up with, and benefit from, consumer demand.

In January 2019, Mintel reported that the UK became the leading country for the development of vegan food products, a position previously held by Germany. One in six (16%) food products launched in the UK during 2018 had a vegan or no animal ingredients claim. This has doubled from just 8% in 2015. The rise has caused concern amongst food producers, and the farmers who supply them, about how British agriculture can keep up, and whether strategies to import more produce are sustainable.

One in three (34%) British meat eaters reduced their meat consumption in the first six months of 2018. This represented a 6% increase on 2017 and demonstrates that whilst vegetarianism and veganism are on the rise, meat eaters are also cutting back on the amount of meat they consume.

This one-day workshop, entitled ‘Capturing a Growing Market – Developing exciting new products for consumers choosing a plant-based diet’  is aimed at anyone who wants to hear from industry experts about how to face the challenges, and reap the benefits, of providing more plant-based products to consumers. It is an opportunity to meet, share ideas and discuss how British farmers, food producers and retailers can prepare for even more dramatic changes in consumer choice.

The workshop is being run by the Agrifood Training Partnership (AFTP). It will feature a variety of presentations from industry speakers including Dr Muyiwa Akintoye, Head of  Research and Development at Quorn Foods and Carol Wagstaff, AFTP Director and Professor of Crop Quality for Health at the University of Reading. Tickets are just £50 and are available from www.aftp.co.uk/node/158.