The World’s Leading Home + Housewares Show

March 2–4, 2025 | McCormick Place | Chicago, IL

The World’s Leading Home + Housewares Show
March 2—4 | McCormick Place | Chicago, IL

It looks like going meatless is happening on more days than just Mondays. Health considerations, environmental concerns, high meat prices and and a greater amount of plant-based alternatives are leading more people to seek out plant-based diets. The plant-based diet trend playing out around the world, but drawing particular attention in the United States.

Retailers selling home and housewares goods should stay on top of this movement, whether it involves product assortments that focus on plant-based food preparation, merchandising, marketing or recipe selection.

Plant-Based Diet Trend Goes Mainstream

“We haven’t seen this level of change in one year (around veganism and vegetarian diet choices) for quite some time,” Nick Stene, Euromonitor International’s senior industry manager for home and garden, told attendees at The Inspired Home Show® 2024.

Stene said Euromonitor’s data, which included 36 countries, shows a sharp increase in consumers choosing to eat vegan, while vegetarian diets are leveling off. He said this partially may be due to some vegetarians moving to flexitarian or pescetarian diets, but more often due to vegetarians moving to hard-core vegan diets.

In the U.S., those following vegan diets now outpace vegetarian diets for the first time, according to Euromonitor; 12% of those surveyed claimed to be vegan or vegetarian. The highest proportions come from Millennials and Gen Z.

Traditionally, countries with high percentages of Buddhists or Hindus—like India and Taiwan— have the highest incidence of vegan and vegetarian diets. But data from CEOWORLD magazine shows that Mexico and Brazil have the second and third highest percentages of vegetarians. (India ranks No. 1 and Taiwan ranks No. 5.)

What’s Driving The Trend?

• Health – Plant-based foods offer a long list of healthy benefits from low cholesterol and low saturated fats to minimal processing. A 2024 U.S. News & World Report ranking named the Mediterranean Diet—which emphasizes fruits, vegetables, whole grains, beans, nuts, legumes, olive oil, herbs and spices—as the best diet for diabetes, heart-healthy eating and bone/joint health, as well as the best diet for overall healthy eating.

• Environmental – The meat industry, especially red meat, has come under increased scrutiny for its environmental footprint. Livestock farming requires large amounts of land for grazing, which can lead to vegetation loss and soil erosion. A number of detriments to climate change and water quality have been identified.

• Prices – Prices for eggs, seafood and meat have all grown at higher rates than inflation in recent years, and even other food prices. While egg prices are beginning to stabilize after the avian flu created shortages (and seafood is starting to decline), meat prices remain elevated. According to the USDA’s Food Price Outlook, beef and veal prices in April 2024 were 7.0% higher than even just a year ago; they’re expected to rise another 4.0% in the coming year.

• More Plant-Based Alternatives – This might be a case of whether the chicken or egg came first, but a growing list of plant-based products are making it easier for people to go meatless. Dairy alternatives are growing significantly.

    What’s It Mean for Retailers?

    Meatless diets will ultimately lead to less demand for steak knives, meat tongs and other cookware indirectly or directly associated with meat items. But there are several opportunities relating to plant-based diet trends in terms of assortments, as Stene points out.

    “A growing use of plant-based ingredients creates more burnt-on residue, helping sales arguments for non-stick cookware, although it should be noted that this audience is highly motivated by wellness and pays greater attention to PFAS-free messaging,” he said. “The rise of veganism also implies a growing household target for premium glass and Tritan in food storage due to flavor transfer and staining, as vegan recipes use more turmeric.”

    Retailers should also be conscious of plant-based diet trends when merchandising and marketing both in-store and online. Recipes used in cooking demonstrations and social media should offer a good variety of meatless options, as well.


    Audio replays for Euromonitor’s session—and all education content shared in the Innovation Theater at The Inspired Home Show 2024—are available online.