Marks & Spencer is to stop selling its controversial “cauliflower steak” after attracting ridicule from consumers who called it “wasteful” and “ridiculous”.
The upmarket food retailer launched the slice of cauliflower, wrapped in plastic and costing £2.50, as part of its new Veggie range.
Consumers were quick to mock the product while many raised concerns about its potential environmental impact.
A spokeswoman for M&S said that “on this occasion we didn’t get it right”.
She said: “Once we’ve sold the stock that is currently in stores, we won’t be ordering any more of this product.
“We work hard to create quick and convenient meals for customers; however on this occasion we didn’t get it right.
“We have launched many other vegetarian dishes that are already proving popular with customers.”
Rachel Clarke wrote on Twitter: “Marks and Spencer stores are selling sliced cauliflower as ‘Cauliflower Steak’ with lots of lovely plastic and charging £2 (normally £2.50). A cauliflower costs about 69p from a local veg shop.”
Another Twitter user replied: “Is not a ‘Cauliflower Steak’, it’s a Fool Detector!”
Others were concerned about the price by weight, calculating that the item amounted to almost £10 a kilogram for cauliflower, with one consumer posting: “You almost have to pat them on the back for getting away with that.”
Much criticism was reserved for the packaging, which consumers described as “wasteful” and “ridiculous”, and said M&S should be “ashamed”.
Speaking to LADbible, Ms Clarke said: “I think it’s just frustrating for a number of reasons. It might put people off trying a vegan or vegetarian diet if that’s on offer.
“Also, I understand how important and great food innovation is, but surely directing customers to fresh vegetables would be more effective?”
M&S said the ready-to-cook cauliflower was for customers looking for a quick and convenient vegetarian meal option.
It said the plastic tray protected the product and was widely recyclable.