PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — As many local food businesses are struggling during the ongoing novel coronavirus pandemic amid mandatory restrictions, one Hood River food manufacturer looks to be in good shape.
Tofurky, the plant-based manufacturer of vegan alternative food, has seen a 22% spike in holiday orders this year, the largest increase since 2015, according to the company’s President and CEO, Jaime Athos.
More people staying put during the holidays due to the pandemic may also be contributing to the sales increase, Athos said.
“I think it’s really interesting to note that when people are more and more cooking in their own homes and eating out less, because of COVID restrictions, that they, when they’re empowered to take their culinary destinies in their own hands, they choose plant based more and more.”
Athos added there’s been a huge uptick in demand for the entire plant-based industry in general, not just for the holiday time but year round.
This past Easter, during the initial coronavirus lockdown in most of the country, the company saw a 600% year over-year-increase in vegan roast ham, Athos said.
They’ve also seen a 25% increase in mainstream retail store sales like Target, Walmart and Kroger.
Meat-replacement products like turkey, burgers, ham and sausages as well as vegan cheeses are the staple of the Tofurky brand, which was established in 1995. Seth Tibbot, who is Athos’s father in law, founded the brand in part to assist with Thanksgiving feasts for family gatherings mixed with both vegans and meat eaters.