Thirty-one percent of the general adult population is interested in plant-based food alternatives. Yes, you read that right. The booming plant-based market has seen remarkable sales growth in the category, so it’s no surprise that a recent CivicScience study shows interest claiming almost one-third of U.S. adults.

Target certainly took note of the huge market when they decided to launch a whole smorgasbord of more than 30 plant-based food items, many priced under $5, as part of the retailer’s existing Good & Gather line which is focused on natural ingredients. 

CivicScience data show that when specifically asked about the Target rollout, 20% of U.S. adults reported they would be at least somewhat likely to purchase the new offerings.

Target favorables specifically are even more amped about the new rollout, sitting at 26% of survey respondents.

When crossing likelihood to purchase Good & Gather’s plant-based items by frequent Target grocery shoppers, that’s where you really see the sweet spot Target is after. More than one-third of this segment is likely to purchase these items. 

Among the general population, CivicScience discovered some insights related to interest in Target’s new line of plant-based foods:

  • Female-driven. Women are more likely than men to want to try Target’s plant-based offerings.
  • Higher income. Though Target aims to make the prices of their new plant-based products more affordable than other name brands in the category, Americans in the highest income bracket are the most likely to want to buy them.
  • Older Millennials and young Gen X. Those aged 30 to 44 show keen interest in this line of products. Gen Z, however, is the most likely age group to be unsure, so they could potentially be more easily swayed to try these products.

Health and Wellbeing

Plant-based food is often pitched as a healthier alternative to meat and other animal by-products. CivicScience data asking consumers to rate their current overall health show that the market for plant-based meat at Target sparks interest from people at two ends of the spectrum. Both people who consider themselves very or somewhat healthy overall, and especially those who say they aren’t healthy at all, are the most interested in Target’s new line. 

People who follow fitness and health trends are also the most interested in this line. Be it life-long, health-conscious folks or people who want to improve their health, the terms health and fitness go hand in hand with all things plant-based food.

In fact, those who consider fitness activities to be a passion of theirs over-index by a big measure in likelihood to try the new line.

As indicated earlier, wealthier Americans are most likely to be interested in Target’s plant-based offerings. Whether that is a result of priorities or personal preferences, buying plant-based food is certainly not top of mind for all walks of life. However, CivicScience has tracked data on the reasons why consumers self-report they don’t eat healthier and discovered that those who think eating healthy is too time consuming and too expensive are the people most interested in Target’s plant-based food venture.

When considering brand versus price for food items, there is an even playing field for Target’s new line. Respectively, those who say brand and price are most important are both nearly just as likely to shop for plant-based food at Target, proving that Target’s strategy of building out house brands and trying to keep prices down is exactly what people are looking for.