Vegan, Vegetarian and Free From Industry Guide

Eggs, tomatoes and salad

Here you will find sources of information such as market research (statistics, trends, developments), key companies, trade magazines, newsletters, and Internet sources.

This guide will be useful to anyone starting a business within the vegan or vegetarian industry and also for those wanting to further their knowledge within this area.

Start-Up Information

COBRA logo
accessible via electronic databases
The Cobra database contains practical fact-sheets on all aspects of starting, running and managing a small business – including information on writing business plans, marketing, company structures etc.

It also covers the practical aspects of how to start and run particular types of businesses – outlining necessary skills, regulations, licences and legislation etc. and highlights other sources of information and advice available.

Business Opportunity Profiles (BOP) 

Dietitian  BOP555 
Greengrocer  BOP136 
Health Food Shop  BOP011 
Herbalist  BOP335 
Restaurant  BOP021 

Mini-Business Opportunity Profiles (MBP)

Raw Food Café  MBP121 
Vegetable Box Scheme  MBP154 
Vegetarian/Vegan Restaurant  MBP181 
Homemade Soup Producer  MBP251 

Sector Updates

Food and Grocery Retail  SEC008 
Restaurants and Foodservice  SYN092 

Small Business Help Books 

This is a collection of books with practical information aimed at those starting and running a business. Located by the entrance to the Centre.

Vegan Ventures by Katrina Fox (Vegan Business Media, 2015.) [SBH. BT.199]
A guide on how to start and grow a business run on vegan principles. Featuring insights and advice from over 60 vegan business owners, entrepreneurs, marketing, PR and business growth professionals in the US, Canada, UK and Australia.
How To Make Money From Cooking And Baking by Rita Storey (Franklin Watts, 2017) [SBH BT.52]
Basic guide covering all the key points, tips and tricks required to start and run a profitable food enterprise. Possibly aimed at a younger audience but clarifies all the stages and requirements clearly and precisely. Areas covered include: designing brand images, conducting market research, writing a business plan and publicity and marketing.

Money For Jam: The Essential Guide To Starting Your Own Small Food Business
by Oonagh Monahan (Oak Tree Press, 2017) [SBH BT.172]
For those starting a food business. Covers latest updates in legislation, registration requirements, labelling, packaging, suppliers, distributers and emerging trends and includes many case studies of successful food businesses.

Popup Republic: How To Start Your Own Successful Pop-up Space, Shop or Restaurant by Jeremy Baras (Wiley, 2016) [SBH BT.88]
A guide to launching your own successful pop–up through stories, examples, anecdotes, and case studies. Includes permits, insurance, and licenses that are needed to run a pop–up, and more. Written from a US perspective.

Start And Run A Sandwich & Coffee Shop by Jill Sutherland (How To Books, Oxford, 2009) [SBH BT.106]
A stage-by stage guide to planning, opening and establishing a sandwich and coffee shop. Practical advice, tips, real-life examples, checklists etc.

Starting Your Own Restaurant
by Sara Rizk (Crimson, 2008) [SBH BT.123]
Comprehensive step by step guide to starting a restaurant and making it a success. Covers finding and furnishing premises, licenses required, finding good suppliers, managing restaurant staff, attracting customers etc. With practical advice from successful restaurateurs.

Start Your Own Speciality Food Business by Cheryl Kimball (Entrepreneur Press, 2016) [SBH BT.112]
American publication with useful information covering business planning, market research, locations, promotions, social media, daily operations, accounting and cash flow, employees etc.

Good money edited by Jonathan Self (Head of Zeus Ltd, 2017) [SBH. STAR.1]
An account of authors own experiences of a successful ethical business start-up.

Books in other departments

A few books covering various aspects of the food industry are available in the Library. They can be found and ordered via the catalogue Explore the British Library.

Food Products Evolution: Innovation Drivers and Market Trends by Angela Tarabella (Springer, 2019) [General Reference Collection DRT ELD.DS. 436020]
Covers the subject of innovation in the food sector through studying the evolution of food product categories by analysing their launch on the market and introduction into legislation.  

Developing New Functional Food and Nutraceutical Products by Debasis Bagchi and Sreejayan Nair (Academic Press, 2017) [General Reference Collection DRT ELD.DS.93916]
Provides information from conceptualizing a new product to marketing it. Aiming to provide a deep understanding of the process.

Future foods: How modern science is transforming the way we eat
by David Julian McClements (Springer 2019) [General Reference Collection DRT ELD.DS. 417195]
Details information on the rapid scientific and technological advances that are changing the way food is produced and consumed and the use of functional foods in combating chronic disease.

Market Research & Statistics 

If you are planning on starting a business you will need to be aware of the latest trends, developments and opportunities within your industry which can all be found from market research.

Market research also covers market size and forecasts, consumer demographics and attitudes, the key players and products and will often include SWOT and PEST analysis showing areas of strength, weakness, opportunities etc.

IBISWorld logo

  • Full-Service Restaurants – UK Market Research Report (2019)
  • Grocery Wholesaling – UK Market Research Report (20109)
  • Meat Product Manufacturing – UK Market Research Report (2019)

Mintel logo

  • Attitudes towards Healthy Eating – UK – February 2019
  • Perceptions of Vegan Meals – UK – January 2019
  • Attitudes towards Sports Nutrition – UK – August 2019
  • Colour Cosmetics – UK – May 2019
  • Consumer Snacking – UK – May 2019
  • Cheese – UK – October 2019
  • Desserts – UK – April 2019
  • Eating Out: The Decision Making Process – UK – July 2019
  • Ethnic Restaurants and Takeaways – UK – February 2019
  • Free-from Foods – UK – December 2018
  • Health Food Retailing – UK – March 2018
  • Ice Cream - UK – November 2018
  • Lifestyles of Generation Z – UK – September 2019
  • Meat-free foods - UK - November 2019
  • Menu Trends – UK – January 2020
  • Natural, Organic and Ethical Toiletries – UK – December 2017
  • Pet Food – UK – September 2019
  • Ready Meals and Ready to Cook Foods – UK – July 2019
  • Specialist Food and Drink Retailers – UK – March 2019
  • The Millennial BPC Consumer – UK – November 2018
  • World Cuisines

GlobalData logo

  • Capitalizing on the Plant-Based Momentum in Dairy-Free Products
  • Caulipower Frozen Pizza
  • Ready Meals (2019)
  • All Aboard The Plant Wagon (2019)
  • Creative Frozen Vegetable Innovation Catering to Multiple Consumer Trends
  • Emily Crisps – Reinventing Crisps for Increasingly Sophisticated Consumers
  • Free from Hot Topic (2018)
  • Hot topic: food on the go (2018)
  • Ingredient Insights: Free From (2019)
  • Interactive Data: Appeal of vegan meat (2018)
  • Opportunities in meat substitutes (2019)
  • The meat free launch that took the internet by storm (2019)
  • Veggie Butchers

EMIS logo

  • Global Vegan Food Market (2019-2026)
  • Global Dairy Alternative Market (2019-2026)
  • Global Fermented Feed Ingredient Market
  • Global Gluten-Free Food Market 2018-2023
  • Global Gluten-free Pasta Market 2018-2025
  • Global Meat Substitute Market, 2019-2026
  • Global Soy Protein Ingredients Market - Growth, Trends, and Forecast (2019 - 2024)
  • Global Protein Alternatives Market - Growth, Trends And Forecasts (2019 - 2024)
  • Global Plant Protein Market - Growth, Trends and Forecasts 2019 – 2024
  • Global Oat Protein Market (2019-2024)
  • Veganism on upswing in the UK
  • Global Protein Alternatives Market (2019-2024)
  • Global Plant Based Protein Supplement Market (2019-2026)

Please note that EMIS has a large series of vegan, vegetarian and free from industry, articles and statistics from countries around the world.

Passport logo

  •  New Concepts in Consumer Foodservice: Next-Gen Technologies
  • Consumer Health in The United Kingdom
  • Going Vegan for Weight Loss and Heart Health
  • Healthy Living
  • Meat Substitutes Going Mainstream in Germany: A New Era of Vegetarian Products?
  • Naturally Healthy Packaged Food in The United Kingdom
  • Raw Food, Protein and “A Little Bit Vegan” Cafés/Bars in the United Kingdom
  • Supplements sector sprouts vegetarian variants
  • Vegetarianism and Other Meat-Restricted Diets
  • Top 5 Countries with the Largest Vegetarian Populations

Printed Market Research Reports

Food allergies and intolerances : consumer perceptions and market opportunities for 'suitable for' and 'free-from' food / prepared by Market Intelligence Team (YK.2018.b.960 Must be ordered using the Catalogue- Explore the British Library)

Profiting from consumers' desires for healthy indulgences : grow sales by resolving the taste versus health dilemma in food and non-alcoholic drinks; new consumer insight Published by Data monitor, London 2005.
Provides an analysis on the evolving nature of consumer eating and drinking pattern between healthy and indulgent occasions. (YD.2013.b.720 Must be ordered using the Catalogue- Explore the British Library)

Business News & Journals

In order to find the latest news on your topic it is always worth searching Factiva, Business Source Complete and EMIS.

You will find articles from specialist business and academic journals, as well as newspapers and magazines. You may also find market research reports and case studies. As well as profiles of leading industry figures.

You will also find articles covering recent developments, and predicting future trends in your industry.

Trade Magazines and Newsletters

Useful for gaining inside knowledge, recent trends, industry news, company profiles, reviews of new products and services. Some contain annual reviews and company contact lists. Ordered via Explore the British Library (please ask for help)

Vegan trade journal: plant-based business news for the food industry published by Prime Impact Events & Media, [2016]
Practical information and insight for businesses which Includes news, special reports, product recommendations as well as interviews from those experienced in the industry. This magazine is for anyone working within the retail, hospitality and the catering industry.

International Sandwich & Food To Go (J&M Group/The British Sandwich Association) [(P) HQ 91 – E(22) Science 2]
(Formerly International Sandwich & Snack News)
News and comment on food trends, food hygiene and new products. Includes suppliers’ directory etc.

Snacks Magazine (Quarterly) (Leek: Tudored) [(P) HQ 91 – E(20) Science 2] Journal of the European Snacks Association.
New product news, technology review, product licensing, savoury and sweet snacks, crisps, nuts, popcorn, ethnic snacks, regulations, market profiles etc. Detailed buyers guide for Europe.

The vegan / the Vegan Society magazine Leatherhead (2019) [General Reference Collection]
Registered educational charity providing information and guidance on everything vegan.

New food: The quarterly business review of new technology for European food & drink manufacturers
by Russell (2019) [Lending Collection: 6084.176000, Volume 22: Issue 1, 2019]

Health Food Business by Ugley Green (2019) [(P) HQ 91 – E(23) Science 2]
Leading trade magazine for independent health food retailers.


Contain lists of companies and industry contacts. Some have annual industry reviews, and specialist articles.

The BFBi Directory 2019-2020 (The Brewing Food & Beverage Industry Suppliers Association) [(B) DIR 338.47663 BUS]
Industry handbook listing worldwide suppliers of products and services for the brewing, food and beverage industry. Also available free online.

Frozen & Chilled Foods Yearbook 2019/20 (Sherwin Publications Ltd) [(B) DIR 338.766402850941 BUS]
Buyers guide for the frozen and chilled foods industry. Gives an alphabetical list of companies with suppliers of catering and retail products.

International Sandwich & Food to Go News. (Café Culture) Annual Trade Directory 2018 (J & M Group) [(B) DIR 338.47664602941 BUS]
Guide to companies and services in the convenience food industry.

Speciality Food - The Directory 2019-2020 (Aceville Publications Ltd) [(B) DIR 664.002941 BUS]
Guide to companies supplying speciality and delicatessen food. Includes baking, confectionery, ready meals, snack foods, drinks etc.

The Grocer: Directory of Manufacturers & Suppliers 2019 (William Reed Business Media Ltd) [(B) DIR 380.1456402541 BUS]
Directory of food and drink manufacturers and suppliers; also has a list of food and drink products and a brand index.

The Caterer Yearbook and Directory 2016
(The Caterer) [(B) DIR 338.764795028 BUS]
Hospitality industry directory of food, drink, fixtures, fittings, furnishings, preparation and cooking equipment, kitchen equipment etc. Includes review of the year with predictions for coming year, recipes, book reviews, product excellence awards etc.

Internet Sources

Websites containing free sources of industry statistics, information and contacts.

Just Food

A website providing access to reports, news and event information from all sectors of the food industry. Includes an international directory of products and suppliers.

UK Hospitality

Represents the broad hospitality sector – covering everything from bars, coffee shops, contract catering, hotels, nightclubs, visitor attractions and other leisure venues.

The Food Standards Agency

An independent Government department that provides businesses with news, reports, guidance and information in relation to food safety.

The European Snacks Association

Concerned with the development and improvement of potato chips, edible nuts and snack food products in Europe.

Big Hospitality (Formerly Restaurant Magazine)

This is a trade publication aimed at owners and managers of restaurants that features trade news, updates and reviews.

The Vegan Society

Registered educational charity, providing guidance, information, and facts on all things vegan.


A provider of market and consumer data.

Plant powered Success

Inspiring vegan start-up ideas.


Global vegan business magazine showing trends, companies, market reports, entrepreneurs and start-ups.


Provides ideas for plant based foods.

The Food Foundry

Support and expertise for a successful business.

Plant Based news

Latest plant based news from around the world on food trends, product launches and interviews.

Please note that every effort has been taken to ensure the accuracy of the information, however some recently acquired items may since have been added to the collection. Please ask for help at the enquiry desk or check the online catalogue Explore the British Library for more details.

Images by Brina Blum, Deniz Altindas, Dose Juice  under a Creative Commons license