Vegan Brand Launches ‘Smoked Salmon’ At UK Supermarkets

Vegan Brand Launches ‘Smoked Salmon’ At UK Supermarkets

Demand for plant-based fish is growing


(updated )

3 Minutes Read

A plate of vegan smoked salmon from Squeaky Bean, which is now available to buy in UK supermarkets Squeaky Bean is tapping into the vegan fish market - Media Credit: Squeaky Bean
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In what’s thought to be a UK-first, vegan smoked salmon will soon be available to buy in supermarkets across the country. 

Squeaky Bean, which is known for its plant-based meat alternatives, is adding two new “fish” products to its collection. As well as the Beechwood Smoked Salmon Style Slices, it’s also releasing Tuna Style Flakes. The salmon will be available at Waitrose from September 20, and both products will arrive in Sainsbury’s on September 27. 

According to the brand, this is the first time that major retailers have stocked a plant-based smoked salmon product. The slices are made from root vegetables, and are smoked in Beechwood just like real salmon. Squeaky Bean states that they are a good source of fiber and are low in saturated fat. 

Squeaky Bean marketing controller Becky Youseman said that the products “genuinely taste and look like the real thing.” She added that the company decided to make them after noticing a “rise in demand for good quality fish alternatives as the public becomes more aware of the health of our oceans.”

The vegan fish market

Vegan Tuna Style Flakes from Squeaky Bean
Squeaky Bean Squeaky Bean has also released vegan tuna

Vegan alternatives to “seafood” have historically been relatively niche products. While meat alternatives for burgers and sausages have been around for a number of years, the vegan fish market has been slower to grow. 

But there has been a recent boom in demand for these foods. The global vegan seafood market was valued at USD $42.1 million in 2012, and it’s been forecasted to catapult to $1.3 billion by 2031. 

As well as a rising number of vegans, there is growing general awareness of the huge ethical and environmental costs of industrial fishing. It’s thought that around 2.7 trillion fishes* are killed by humans each year. This is more than all other animals combined. Huge nets – known as bottom trawlers – catch vast amounts of fishes from the ocean, killing unintended species and destroying vital aquatic ecosystems in their path. 

Many fishes sold in supermarkets come from the fish farming – or aquaculture – industry. Around 70 percent of the salmon we eat are raised on farms, and numerous investigations have uncovered cruelty and abuse on these. 

Where to buy vegan fish

The new Squeaky Bean products are joining a number of other plant-based fish products available to buy at mainstream UK supermarkets. It was recently reported that Singapore-based brand HAPPIEE! would be bringing frozen vegan shrimp, calamari rings, and squid pieces to Tesco and Ocado. Other meat-free brands like Moving Mountains, Vivera, and Quorn also include fish alternatives in their collections. 

Tesco’s Wicked Kitchen has in the past year acquired two vegan seafood brands, Good Catch and Current Foods. In a statement earlier this year, Wicked Foods’ CEO Pete Speranza said merging the brands meant the company was “uniquely positioned as consumers continually learn about the environmental impact realities on sea life.”

*While the English language typically refers to multiple fish as “fish,” we use the term “fishes” to emphasize their individuality

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