Chief executive Roger Whiteside revealed that Greggs’ new product development teams were looking into creating vegan alternatives to steak bakes, pasties and even doughnuts.
Speaking to radio station LBC, Whiteside said: “We are plugging away at seeing if we can come up with a vegan version of all our top-selling lines. Obviously, people want a vegan option.
“If we can succeed in doing that and produce something that tastes just as good as the meat version, then that will sell very successfully. That's what has been shown with the vegan sausage roll.”
His comments come as the bakery chain opened its 2,000th store last week at the South Shields transport interchange.
Greggs launched its vegan sausage roll in January this year to coincide with Veganuary – a month-long international challenge to eat a vegan diet. Its launch was in response to strong consumer demand, including a petition by PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) last year, which was signed by more than 20,000 people.
Speaking at the time, Whiteside said: “Like many food retailers we have seen increasing demand for vegetarian and vegan products.
“We have been trying to develop a vegan version of our famous sausage roll for some time now. It has not been easy, but our taste panel customers all love this one, so we have decided to launch it as our contribution to Veganuary.”
News of a potential new range of vegan options from Greggs follows a spate of plant-based new product development from food and drink manufacturers.
Earlier this month, Nestlé launched what it claimed to be the world’s first plant-based instant frothy coffees under its Nescafé Gold brand, using oat and coconut milk.
This year also saw a new range of cakes made from all-plant ingredients secure listings in Waitrose stores across the country.
Meanwhile, Kinnerton’s Norfolk factory is gearing up to produce more than three million vegan and free-from chocolate bars in 2019, Food Manufacture has learned.