Marketing Plant-based Menu Items
Promoting Plant-based Menu Items via Meatless Monday Can Help Meet Customer Demand for Meat-Alternatives.
- The simplicity and flexibility of Meatless Monday makes it an easy first step to eating less meat.
- Meatless Monday is one of the most well-known meat reduction campaigns. [MM 2020]
- You don’t need to take meat off of the menu; simply promote plant-based options.
- The only “rule” of Meatless Monday is to provide at least one plant-based option.
Menu and Food Presentation Recommendations to Increase Sales of Plant-based Items.
- Plant-based menuing best practices to promote Meatless Monday options:
- Use enticing language to describe menu items (see below).
- List plant-based options first or second on the menu, not in a veggie or meatless section.
- Do not label dishes ‘vegan’ or ‘vegetarian’. Alternatively, use a small leaf, ‘v’ or green heart to indicate it is a plant-based item.
- Provide plant-based versions of familiar and traditional foods you typically serve. For example, if your best-selling items are cheeseburgers and lamb curry, offer a plant-based meat burger and vegetable or tofu curry.
- Make meatless meals look visually appealing and easy to identify.
- Don’t create a Meatless Monday or ‘Vegetarian’ section or station. Integrate all plant-based items into the usual food displays, grab-and-go cases and online apps menus so they are familiar to customers.
- Provide useful nutritional info that promotes the positive immune boosting benefits of plant-based foods and helps dispel meatless food misconceptions, such as lacking protein.
Plant-based Menu Terminology Best Practices
Use enticing, sensory words that describe the texture, taste, or smell of plant-based menu items, including:
- Juicy, crunchy, crispy, creamy, warming, crunchy, savory and sticky
- Incorporate nostalgic, traditional names that evoke comforting, familiar feelings: grandma’s dumplings, mom’s meatballs and hearty holiday roast
- Create a sense of place with geographic themed names: farm-to-fork, Cuban blackbean, New York-style pizza and Texas barbecue
- Include provenance in the menu descriptions: wild-forged berries, local farmer’s market strawberries, and upstate-grown apples
- Create cuisine-focused names: Tex-Mex,Thai, Mexican, Italian, Mediterranean, Indian and Southern
- Ensure descriptions convey the fulfilling qualities of meatless items: full, filling, satisfied, satiated and hearty
- Make the descriptions sound irresistible: mouthwatering, delicious, tasty
Learn more about the benefits of Meatless Monday and plant-based menu items at MeatlessMonday.com/Foodservice