Less good and more expensive, vegetable products? At the very least, these are the two main reasons that lead some Quebec consumers to shun fauxmage, imitation chicken croquettes and other vegetable sausages.
In Quebec, the price of plant products, perceived as higher, slows down 46% of people, while 40.3% do not appreciate the taste, reveals a report published this Thursday by the Laboratory of Analytical Sciences in Agrifood of the Dalhousie University.
According to the study, nearly 33% of people surveyed in Quebec have consumed a vegetable substitute for meat in the past 12 months, a percentage almost identical to the Canadian average (34%).
The director of the Laboratory, Sylvain Charlebois, however, did not look into the analysis of the price of meat and its vegetable counterparts, an exercise to which he will lend himself during the summer. Last year, a study published by his team found that Beyond Meatballs and plant-based sausages cost an average of 38% more than meat. Impossible for the moment to know if this gap has remained the same.
La Presse did some price comparisons by looking at supermarket websites. The gaps on the selected items were not that big. The prices of all meat alternatives, however, have not been scrutinized. Thus, on Wednesday, the St-Hubert brand chicken pot pie (645 g) and its vegetable equivalent were both sold at $9.49 at Maxi. Metro was showing its frozen chicken version at $10.99 for 800g. The imitation chicken was the same price, but for 750g. On the IGA side, the plant-based pâté was advertised at $11.99, while the chicken one cost $1 less.
Then, the Imitation Swiss Sliced Pack (200g) was $6.49 at IGA compared to $6.79 for cheese, 210g pack from Nos Compliments brands. At the time of our research, however, it was displayed on sale at $4.99. At Metro, La Fernandière hot Italian sausages cost $1.54 per 100g while the Yves vegetable version was $2.10 per 100g. Note that supermarket prices change from Thursday to the following Wednesday.
In addition, plant products could take up more space in consumers’ grocery baskets in the coming years, believes Sylvain Charlebois, who will present the results of his study to Plant-Based Canada, a non-profit organization that defends benefits of a plant-based diet next month. “These products had a false start with Beyond Meat trying to copy a product that people love. »
According to the study, almost 46.5% of people in Quebec – compared to 48.2% in Canada – find that herbal products have improved, which Sylvain Charlebois considers good news. “There is hope in reaching out to those who have shunned these products so far. »