Vegetarianism on the rise in New Zealand: Roy Morgan Research
New Zealanders who follow a vegetarian diet or eat vegetarian most of the time has increased by 27 per cent since 2011 according to Roy Morgan Research.
In research conducted during the 12 months leading up to June 2015, 10.3 per cent of New Zealanders over the age of 14 said they are always or mostly vegetarian.
Whilst vegetarianism is up across all major demographic segments in New Zealand, the strongest growth is amongst men, up 63 per cent from 5.7 per cent of the male population to 9.3 per cent. Growth is also strong amongst 14 – 24 year olds, up 55 per cent from 8.6 per cent of this age group to 13.3 per cent.
The rate of vegetarianism drops sharply amongst 35 – 49 year olds with only 8.1 per cent of this group saying they eat a no-meat diet. Roy Morgan Research speculates this could be because the group is more likely to have children to feed and may find it difficult to maintain vegetarianism whilst doing this.
Source: Roy Morgan Single Source New Zealand, July 2010 – June 2011 n = 11,936 and July 2014 – June 2015 n = 5,983 New Zealanders 14+
General Manager of Client Services at ANZ Roy Morgan Research, John La Rosa, said New Zealand supermarkets and restaurants should be keeping in mind the country’s growing interest in vegetarianism.
“As more and more Kiwis at least attempt to live a vegetarian lifestyle, it will become increasingly important for a range of businesses—from supermarkets and their suppliers, to takeaway and fast food outlets—to understand this group,” La Rosa said.
“Our research shows that vegetarians are well over twice as likely as the average Kiwi to avoid dairy foods whenever possible (perhaps as part of a stricter vegan diet) or to try to buy only organic food. However they also are big consumers of frozen or chilled ready-prepared meals and takeaway foods who say they don’t have time to spend cooking,” stated La Rosa.
“New Zealand is a meat-loving (and meat-producing) country and many vegetarians do still buy meat, whether for themselves or their families. In fact, almost half (48%) of New Zealand’s vegetarian grocery buyers purchase some form of fresh meat during the week. Supermarkets in particular will need to ensure they can cater to these vegetarian meat-buyers, providing organic, humanely sourced and trustworthy options,” La Rosa concluded.