After the indulgences of the festive period, health becomes a major driver for consumers in January, which affects their dining out decisions, according to Vegetarian Express.
A carefully considered New Year menu could boost January trade, said the Hertfordshire-based firm, which supplies vegetarian and vegan food to the hospitality sector.
Managing director Will Matier said: “Alongside January resolutions, the recent announcement from the World Health Organisation, which highlighted the carcinogenic properties of processed meat, means there is a huge opportunity available to those operators increasing their meat-free offering in January – or even better, throughout the year.
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“It’s essential to attract customers that are consciously seeking a more balanced diet.”
Vegetarian options should be on offer throughout the year as there had been an increase in flexitarianism or meat-reducers, which was expected to rise this year, he added.
Recent figures from Mintel showed that 35% of Brits identified as semi-vegetarian, with 71% of consumers wanting to see lighter vegetarian options.
Vegetarians were also less likely to be obese or diagnosed with heart disease, high blood pressure and type 2 diabetes, the firm claimed.
Ingredients pub chefs should consider putting on their menus in 2016, according to Matier, included grains such as quinoa and farro.
“Quinoa was big news in 2015 and will continue to be a staple on menus thanks to its anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, as well as the fact it is naturally gluten-free, low in fat and high in protein,” Matier said.
“However, we expect to see its popularity spread to other ancient grains over the next year. Hemp seeds, for example, are one of the most nutritious foods naturally available containing 20 different amino acids are a great source of Omega 3 and protein for strengthening the immune system.”
Meanwhile, the Publican’s Morning Advertiser’s Vegetarian Report will be published in the 14 January issue.
The report reveals detailed facts and figures about vegetarian food from leading analysts and operators and will arm pub chefs with the information they need to know to put vegetarian food on their menus.