Last Friday, a new vegan and vegetarian Pret a Manger opened in Oxford’s city centre. Located on Cornmarket Street, it is one of just five nationwide to take the leap to go completely meat-free.
Within a week of its opening, Veggie Pret has already attracted large amounts of customers, mainly students. The branch is busy all week, especially during breakfast and lunch hours on weekdays.
Oxford’s Veggie Pret serves various foods and beverages. So far, the branch’s most popular and best-selling items have been the ‘Breakfast Eggless Mayo & Avo’ baguette (£3.25), ‘All Day Vegan Breakfast Rye Roll (£4.35) and the ‘Artichoke, Olives and Tapenade’ baguette (£4.85).
The branch has also seen attraction to their vegan cookies and pastries, including the ‘Very Berry Croissant’ (£2.99) which has been the most popular to date.
When it comes to drinks, Pret’s all across the country are seeing a greater appeal towards alternative (dairy-free) milk options. In Oxford’s Veggie Pret, oat milk is the most popular alternative option amongst customers, followed by soya milk and then coconut milk.
One of the Oxford Pret managers, Angela Botero, told Cherwell that they currently have a relatively small range, with 26 unique items of vegan and vegetarian food. Veggie Pret, through undertaking consumer research, hopes to be able to introduce more products, having over 40 to 50 different meat-free product lines.
Oxford’s Veggie Pret will become the hub for trying out new vegetarian and vegan food creations on customers.
Having new, healthy and more environmentally friendly food options is a priority for Veggie Pret, which looks to evaluate sales and bring in more choices in a couple of months during the spring.
However, the branch still intends to serve all parts of society and don’t want to restrict themselves solely to the vegan and vegetarian communities. In fact, Veggie Pret claims that “our mission is to make meat-free food so good it can be enjoyed by everyone”. Its success will be determined in the coming months.
Oxfordshire’s six other Pret stores will all continue to sell meat options. Nonetheless, Pret certainly seeks to grow the potential of their veggie branches.