- Mindful Consumer: Consumers have an essential influence on the food and beverage industry, and trends are showing that modern consumers are extremely conscious about their product preferences.
Health and dieting trends have evolved into an overshadowing factor in 2018, as consumers are more likely to purchase products that featuregood-for-you claims. Studies have likewise shown that a large percentage of consumers veer towards veganism and free-form.
Protection of the environment is an undeniable cornerstone of a modern society, causing consumers to be highly influenced by the chance to build a better tomorrow, which is manifested in claims about sustainability.
- Lighter Enjoyment: Trends show that we are moving towards a healthier 2018, as consumers are very aware of healthier eating and drinking. Light products have become an echoing claim by consumers, and will be very visible in 2018.
Alcohol consumption has been a large talking point in the past few years, although studies show that consumers are more likely to adhere to moderation when it comes to the subject of alcohol in 2018.
Furthermore, plant-based waters have taken up the battle with soft drinks, and have a strong influence on consumer choice.
- Positively Processed: Consumers have always been interested in the manufacturing process of the popular products on the shelves, although this interest will prove to expand in 2018.
Consumers are drawn towards the natural, and that which is “raw” and “old fashioned” is considered to be more natural. Ingredients such as nuts and charcoal have also proven to find more shelf space than other items.
Finally, it has become easier to establish a tight bond between consumers and manufacturers. Consumers find an interest in knowing how their products are being made, which allows for the manufacturers to describe the manufacturing process more clearly on their items.
- Going Full Circle: Eco friendliness and sustainability are in the front seat once more, as consumer demand for recycling continues. Awareness around plastic and food waste is rising every year. Consumers are aware of the influence of these subjects, and request greener choices.
Dairy alternative drinks thrive on the assumption that they are more sustainable than dairy, and biodegradable packaging is high on the list of consumer awareness.
- Beyond the Coffeehouse: Items such as coffee and tea have never been more visible in the supermarkets, as well as in the consumer consciousness.
These caffeinated substances are being reinvented, and are popping up everywhere in all sorts of shapes and categories. Variations and flavors such as latte, espresso, and macchiato have never been easier to find in the supermarkets. Tea has become a luxurious experience, and is more often than not found in exotic variations.
Consumers have simply adapted to the appearance of coffee and tea, which will lead to an increased visibility of these items in 2018.
- Say it with Color: We are living in an extremely modern age, where social media has the undivided attention of nearly all age groups in the demographic spectrum. Colors rule social media, which is why foods and drinks have become visibly more colorful over the past. It has become easier to deliver colorful variations, with a clean label.
Colorful foods and spices such as beetroot and turmeric are highly recognized in 2018, for their beautiful colors and health benefits.
People love to share their food and drink experiences with others, which is why terms such as “instagramability” have become leading stars over the past few years. Consumers are very interested in beautifully colored foods that also have a healthy composition.
- Dining out, In: Consumers are obsessed with restaurant quality food, but are also very interested in experiencing this in their own homes.
Recipes for “fresh” foods and gourmet styled eating drives the consumers towards personal cooking experience.
Innovative serving platters, such as tacos and food bowls, have captured the consumers’ hearts. There is therefore a large incentive in creating new dining formats for consumers to experience.
The lines between foodservice and retail dining have become blurred over the years. There is a large market for creating restaurant-styled dining kits that only require short preparation.
- From Snack to Mini Meals: In a busy everyday life, consumers have exchanged regular dining hours with the ability to acquire an easy and nutritious snack.
Snack manufacturers have experienced an immense rise in energy claims, as consumers are looking for snacks that can actively replace an entire meal.
Snacks and easy accessibility is experiencing a general rise in popularity, which brings a lot of merit to the production of these quick mini meals.
Well-known meal components such as fruits and vegetables have grown to become a popular snack on their own.
Consumers are looking for easy accessibility and consumption in 2018, as well as healthy and nutritious label claims
- Ocean Garden: Fish and other marine products are well known for being extremely healthy and nutritious, although the year ahead may prove to enhance the popularity of these items.
Studies show that many consumers choose fish over red meat, which opens the market for expanded fish products.
Natural saltiness in marine products has also shown to be a good substitution for regular salt, as it adds natural and delicious flavoring to the product.
Furthermore, consumers have had their eyes opened to the world of sea greens such as algae, kelp, and wakame. These natural marine vegetables will likely have a large influence on the food industry in 2018.
- Bountiful Choice: Brands have become more aware of their consumers’ emotions in the past few years, and will continue to do so in 2018.
Innovative and creative brands and tastes will be able to appeal to the consumers through emotional bonds.
Consumers are curious, and “out of the box” thinking helps invigorate the attention to detail in both appearance and taste.
Consumer awareness and demand rules the food and drink industry, forcing it to be consistent in its adaptation to consumer interest. Many new concepts will appear in the year of 2018, while other, older products will either dissolve or adapt to the new standards. Key words such as color, light, sustainability, snacks, and marine will pave the way for a new and exiting year in the food and drink industry.
(Source: InnovaMarketInsights, 2018)