Emirates has reported a substantial 40% increase in customer demand for plant-based meals. Responding to this claim, the airline has announced plans to expand its vegan menu offerings both onboard and in its lounges in 2024.
This expansion will include a variety of new vegan dishes, adding to Emirates’ extensive ‘vegan vault’ which currently boasts over 300 plant-based recipes.
Throughout 2023, Emirates’ culinary repertoire included more than 300 vegan recipes, catering to passengers across 140 destinations. This marked a significant rise from the 180 recipes available in 2022. Reflecting the growing preference for plant-based diets, Emirates served over 450,000 vegan meals in 2023, up from 280,000 in the previous year.
The report of 40% year-on-year increase aligns with the rise in passenger volumes. However, certain regions have exhibited even more pronounced growth in vegan meal consumption. Notably, Africa saw an additional 4% increase, Southeast Asia 5%, and the Middle East a considerable 34% surge.
Emirates Adds New Vegan Choices to Meet Changing Passenger Preferences
The demand for vegan meals was most pronounced in Economy Class. Specific routes, particularly to China, Japan, and the Philippines, recorded significant increases in the consumption of these meals. Additionally, many Emirates Cabin Crew members have also adopted a plant-based diet, following the introduction of vegan meals for the crew in 2018.
Emirates’ commitment to catering to diverse dietary preferences extends across all travel classes. In Economy Class, passengers can choose from dishes like chickpea crepes, pumpkin frittatas, tofu tikka masala, and chickpea kale stew. Premium Economy offers options such as jackfruit curry and squash chestnut stew, while Business Class presents sophisticated choices like roasted cauliflower with ancient grains and Asian tofu ragout. First Class passengers can indulge in gourmet vegan dishes like creamy polenta cake with thyme mushroom ragout and aubergine curry with charred rice.
From Economy to Luxury: Emirates’ Diverse Vegan Meal Options
Later in the year, Emirates plans to introduce an array of new vegan options, including main courses, snacks like fruit muffins and vegan pizza, and desserts such as chocolate pecan cake and raspberry tonka cake. These vegan options are available for pre-order on all Emirates flights and can be directly ordered in First Class and in Emirates Lounges, with a 24-hour advance notice requirement.
This expansion of Emirates’ vegan offerings reflects a growing global trend towards plant-based diets and the airline’s commitment to meeting the evolving preferences of its passengers.