Flexitarians on the rise in New Zealand

The flexitarian trend looks to be on the rise in New Zealand, with Kiwis turning towards meat-free meals more often.

Being a flexible vegetarian means you eat a lot of vegetarian food, but have the occasional meat treat.

Lord of the Fries is helping feed the growing number of vegans, vegetarians and flexitarians, when the flexitarians aren't eating meat.

Co-owner Bruce Craig says: "We get a lot of people who come, who don't necessarily know we are vegetarian or vegan, and they just come and eat the food and they love it, then they find out afterwards and they are like 'holy cow'."

Metro Consultancy dietitian Amy Liu says: "A lot of people are turning to plant-based things, with the odd cheat days.

"If they want a steak, they can go out and have a steak."

But out on the street, there is some confusion about the term, with one person saying that you're either a vegetarian or you're not.

Another was more positive about the ability to compromise, so as not to ruin a dinner party.

In the UK, flexitarianism is on the rise and people are flocking to events such as vegan food festivals.

"Over 50 percent are saying they don't need meat to have a good meal," flexitarian blogger Annabelle Randles says. "There is enormous potential with the flexitarian."

Experts say eating more plant-based food and less meat benefits your health, as the diet is higher in fibre, vitamins and minerals.

In the UK, Marks and Spencer has noticed a change in consumer habits and this Christmas, it will have its largest-ever vegetarian range.

"This is definitely not a fad," Marks and Spencer product developer Helena Fleming says. "This is definitely an evolution of people making conscious changes in the way they eat."

With Christmas fast approaching, perhaps some vegan hot dogs could be a fresh addition to the menu.