Pukka, the nation’s favourite hot pie brand, is making a major move with the launch of a range of plant-based pies – the first time the brand has launched a vegan product.
Rolling out from 16 September across its chilled individual pie portfolio, Pukka’s Vegan range will see two of the brand’s bestselling pie recipes trade their ingredients for 100% vegan alternatives, bringing shoppers Vegan Chicken & Mushroom and Vegan Minced Steak & Onion.
Vegan Chicken & Mushroom has soy protein vegan ‘chicken’ pieces, sliced mushrooms and a savoury vegan creamy sauce encased in 144 layers of Pukka’s signature golden puff pastry. Vegan Minced Steak & Onion offers a new take on this traditional recipe, with minced soy protein vegan ‘steak’ paired with finely chopped onions in a rich gravy.
The new recipes will be highlighted with a vegan flash and the Vegetarian Society Approved vegan trademark front of pack on Pukka’s recyclable packaging, explains Pukka’s head of marketing, Rachel Cranston.
“The Hot Pie category is worth £256 million across total retail outlets and Pukka accounts for £41 million of these sales – an increase of +13.7% over the past year.
“Our new recipes are part of an ongoing investment to help put more pies on more plates more often and as the People’s Pie, we want to make sure there’s a Pukka for everyone. Research has found that 55% of shoppers are actively reducing their meat intake, while the number of vegans in the UK has risen +305% in the last year. This demonstrates there’s a real opportunity to offer shoppers vegan alternatives to two of our most popular pie recipes which don’t compromise on taste, and we’re confident that retailers will benefit from incremental sales by stocking our new range.”
As well as its sales success, Pukka has won plaudits for its innovative and great-tasting new product pipeline, including scooping a prestigious Grocer New Products Award for its Vegetarian Cheese, Leek & Potato pie.
Vanessa Brown from the Vegetarian Society adds: “The popularity of vegan food and drink products shows no signs of slowing down, and this is thanks to brands like Pukka launching tasty vegan options. It helps to give people more variety and these pies have been accredited with the Vegetarian Society Approved vegan trademark which will appeal to a lot of shoppers looking for their next vegan-friendly meal.”
Following hot on the heels of Pukka’s new vegan recipes is the return of the brand’s award-winning multichannel campaign – ‘The People’s Pie’ – which will be back in the Autumn across national TV, digital, retail, food service, social and PR and heroes the new range.
Pukka’s Vegan range launches into Morrisons from 16 September and Sainsbury’s vegan aisle from 23 September (RRP £1.89, 213g) and will continue to roll-out into supermarkets nationwide throughout the rest of the year.