A coalition of companies, civil society groups, and charities has launched a new organization, the Plant-Based Food Alliance UK. Backed by Upfield, Oatly, Alpro, ProVeg UK, and The Vegan Society, the Alliance, will act as a voice for Britain’s growing plant-based food and drink sector to make the UK a global leader in the space.
The Alliance, which expects to grow rapidly, aims to develop a UK Plant-based Food Charter to outline how businesses and the Government can collaborate to support the adoption of plant-based diets. Among the issues that the Alliance will advocate include; advocating for greater awareness of the environmental impacts of food and beverage products, including more precise environmental labels on food packaging, and more public health campaigns educating consumers about plant-based diets. Also, farmers will receive assistance in transitioning to meet the growing demand for plant-based foods.
Speaking on the launch of the Alliance, the CEO, Marisa Heath, stated– “We’re already seeing people introducing more and more plant-based meals into their diets, driven by a desire to improve their health and to reduce the environmental impact of their food choices.”
“With food systems accounting for one-third of greenhouse gas emissions globally, leaders gathering at the COP26 Summit cannot afford to ignore this shift. We need to see plans put in place for making our food choices more sustainable, and plant-based foods are the most impactful way of achieving this”.
“The Government’s forthcoming Food Strategy White Paper presents an opportunity to build on the consumer-led shift towards plant-based food and drinks, with a quarter of the UK population already describing themselves as flexitarians.
“Plant-based food and drink offer opportunities to every part of the UK food supply chain, including consumers, farmers, producers, retailers, and exporters. We look forward to working together with businesses and the Government to make the most of this potential.
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This is not the first organization to call for a switch to a plant-based diet. A growing number of policies across Europe are beginning to recognize the need for this transition. Following its recent vow to phase out cages, the European Parliament recently passed a strategy to encourage plant-based foods and a shift away from factory farming. Beyond Meat, Nestlé, Unilever, and Humane Society International are among the notable members.
Meanwhile, Amsterdam has announced intentions to encourage its inhabitants to consume 50% plant-based foods by 2030, while a landmark political agreement in Denmark will see grants given to farmers who produce plant-based foods rather than livestock.
“We have an exciting opportunity to support this people-powered transition to a more sustainable, healthier food system, and to attract more innovation and investment in the UK as we do so,” CEO of the Plant-Based Food Alliance, Marisa Heath, stated in the same statement. “Preparing now for the shift towards plant-based foods will also shore up our national food security for future generations.“