Sainsbury’s opened what it claims was the UK’s first meat-free butchers last week in response to a surge in sales of plant-based products.

MFB website

Located in Bethnal Green, East London, the traditional style butchers was open for three days from Friday 21 June to mark World Meat Free Week.

It offered customers an array of cuts and joints derived from 100% plant-based alternatives, such as mushroom, jackfruit and pea protein.

Sainsbury’s has seen a 65% increase in sales of plant-based products year on year.

Its recent Future of Food report predicted that a quarter of all British people could be vegetarian in 2025 - up from one in eight today.

Sainsbury’s buyer James Hamilton said: “Whilst we’re seeing a huge climb in sales of our plant-based foods, we know from conversations with customers that there is a sense of trepidation about cooking with them.

”So, our Meat-Free Butchers has been launched to encourage people to get up close to the products, try what they like and take home some valuable cooking advice and recipe inspiration.”