COVID-19 Impact on Pharmaceutical Packaging in Chemicals and Materials Industry

COVID-19 Impact on Vegan Butter in the Food and Beverages Industry

  • Food & Beverage
  • Dec 21, 2021

COVID-19 Impact on Vegan Butter in the Food and Beverages Industry

The COVID-19 pandemic has influenced the whole planet with its major impacts on the economy and businesses across the globe. The COVID-19 spread worldwide in unprecedented ways due to its high infectious and contagious nature and lack of availability of its vaccine. As a result, the greatest medical challenge in the 21st century is yet to be faced by physicians worldwide. Though the emergence of the virus can be traced back to Asia, many European countries along with the U.S. have been struck massively by the pandemic. The virus has spread across all regions ranging from North America, Europe, Asia-Pacific, Middle East, and Africa up to South America. The COVID-19 has been declared as a pandemic by World Health Organization (WHO) due to its increased spread across the globe. After the declaration of the pandemic, various countries announced the complete lockdown, such as India, China, and other Asian countries, to decrease its spread. According to the situation report of 29th October 2021, WHO stated that around 245.4 million cases of the corona had been reported globally, and 4.97 million patients died due to the coronavirus. On a slightly positive note, a total of 6.83 billion vaccine doses have been administered as well.

The COVID-19 pandemic has affected the global vegan butter market significantly. The persistence of COVID-19 has affected the supply and demand chain as it got disrupted due to the non-availability of ingredients used for preparing vegan butter products such as plant-derived oils.

Health and wellness are significant drivers for the growth of vegan butter during the pandemic. And also there is a shift in the consumer behavior pattern due to the risk of zoonotic diseases associated with animal based products.


During the pandemic, the consumers' demand increased for overall health and wellness products. The consumers' demand for vegan butter is expected to grow rapidly beyond the historical base. The sale of vegan butter has significantly increased amidst the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. According to a survey conducted by the Plant Based Food Association (PBFA), the U.S. retails plant-based foods sale was 35% higher than total retail food amid the panic buying period around March and April of 2020. The pandemic has considerably transformed consumer buying patterns. People across the globe are demanding and buying plant based foods due to their healthier and safer properties compared to animal-based products. Therefore, the growing consumers' preference surrounding food safety amidst the pandemic is expected to boost the demand for vegan butter in the upcoming years.

For instance,

  • According to GFI, as of December 2020, in the U.S., the sales of vegan butter grew 36% in the past year. More than 69 million units of vegan butter were sold in 2020, and the unit sales grew by 35%

The COVID-19 provided a substantial increase in sales of vegan butter, which proved to be beneficial for all manufacturers in the global vegan butter market.


The price of vegan butter is costly due to the raw materials involved in the manufacturing of vegan butter and its processing. The COVID-19 hurts the price of vegan butter due to the disruption in the import and export of raw materials, restrictions imposed by the governments, restricted movements, shut down of stores, and less availability of workers. All these factors lead to the rise in the price of vegan butter globally.


The COVID-19 crisis has majorly affected the vegan butter market and its supply chain across the world. Due to the persistence of the COVID-19, lockdown restrictions were implied all around the world, which disturbed the supply chain of vegan butter. Because of restrictions in the movements, it was hard for the manufacturers to collect raw materials like plant-derived oils, which has, in turn, affected the manufacturing of vegan butter.

Also, the restriction movement hit the supply of global manufacturers, which made it difficult for them to supply their products in the global market. With the COVID-19 outbreak, the demand for vegan butter was initially decreased due to lack of awareness, change in consumer preference, restriction on the trading process, and loss of labor due to movement restrictions.


With the increased demand for healthy essential products, the manufacturers are taking new initiatives for vegan butter availability even during COVID-19 time. Greater awareness of how consuming plant ingredients can assist immune systems has helped many companies to gain market share. Additionally, manufacturers partner with other companies to launch new technology or products or acquire them or merge with them. With the growing demand for plant-based foods all over the globe, the manufacturers are launching various plant-based butter products.

For instances,

  • In September 2021, Flora, a brand of Upfield has launched a vegan butter alternative that is made from sunflower, rapeseed, and palm oil
  • In August 2021 Violife, a brand of Upfield has expanded its vegan products portfolio by launching a new vegan butter alternative Vioblock

Thus, the increasing number of launches, mergers, acquisitions, and partnerships by manufacturers to develop products to fulfill the rising demand for vegan butter is expected to boost the market's growth.


Pandemic has taken a toll on every aspect of life, including the global economy. With the significant downfalls in many sectors, a collaborative effort of government, industry players, and consumers can win the fight against COVID-19. The general public health measures include awareness about home isolation, keeping up with the food and medical supplies, particularly for underprivileged people, is carefully followed by governments worldwide. During these pandemic circumstances, consumer awareness about high immunity has become a legitimate concern.

To maintain social distance, consumers have been switching their purchasing habits from offline to online retail. Lockdowns, primarily around the world, have disrupted the supply and demand chain. The vegan butter manufacturers have faced several challenges, including labor shortages, inability to reach markets, and a lack of resources and raw materials, but the situation is improving as prohibitions have been lifted in many countries and supply chain issues have been resolved. As a result of the enhanced supply chain, the vegan butter industry is expected to increase dramatically in the future years.