Are You Choosing For Healthy Vegan Options In 2022?
If the advent of Covid and the resulting health crisis has taught us one thing, it is to prioritize our health above all else. And it is this thought process that drives the now conscious Indian consumer towards making healthier choices, including a push towards consuming more plant-based foods. With veganism on the rise, non-dairy milk and plant meats, which at their core promote a healthy and sustainable lifestyle, are slowly becoming a staple in Indian households. We have come a long way from veganism just being a micro-trend. It is now a popular mainstream movement revolutionizing the Indian food and beverage industry.
The Indian market has quickly adapted to the changing trend. The organized retail stores offer premium shelf spaces, and the e-tailers increase their SKU count of vegan food products. One can now find dedicated counters in retail stores that only cater to plant-based and other vegan products. The buzz has even caught on to the startup industry as well. Many plant-based companies are now sprouting to develop healthy, vegan, and tasty solutions to the more mainstream snacks and beverages. Considering the high saturation in e-commerce, payments, mobility, and logistics sectors, the next giant unicorn in India could well be in the vegan space.
Further aiding this growth is that over 70% of Indians are lactose intolerant. Coupled with the rising adulteration in the dairy industry, one can understand why increasing numbers of consumers are opting for non-dairy beverages. They and much easier to digest, aiding in alleviating inflammation by offering a significantly lower fat and calorie count.
Vegan foods also promote overall and long term well being of the body by increasing the bioavailability of micronutrients, with their antioxidant properties that improve blood flow and the presence of complex carbohydrates, which maintain a steady release of glucose in the body, thereby preventing spikes in blood sugar (often the case with simple carbs). But health is not all there is to it. With companies aiming to go mainstream with vegan products, a lot of attention is being paid to making them taste good. As a result, several brands have created a range of products that taste good and are also easy on the pocket.
As a result, many athletes and prominent personalities are now hopping on this bandwagon and opting for plant-based diets to improve performance and longevity. Even celebrities are being seen endorsing vegan foods and diets. Many celebrities have lent support to vegan food brands, from endorsements to investments. Virat Kohli and Anushka Sharma are the latest ones who have endorsed a budding plant-based meat startup.
This entire ecosystem around veganism has made alternative and healthy food products more accessible and affordable than a few years ago. And with the growth trajectory that is set to drive the next big wave of FDI into India, we may well be looking at a vegan revolution that has arrived in full swing and is here to stay.
(Inputs By Sumair Sachdev, COO, Alt Co.)