Innova Market Insights has released its top 10 trends for 2013 that are likely to impact the food and drinks market next year and beyond. Successful previous predictions from Innova Market Insights have included the emergence of interest in naturalness and sustainability as long ago as 2008 and the return to softer claims for 2011. The trends are as follows:
- The Aware Shopper, who is more informed and knowledgeable about value and health, is increasingly influencing the market, supported by mounting pressure from lobby groups, NGOs, and celebrities, calling for transparency, credibility, and accountability for the industry. Meanwhile, social media campaigns also make companies more susceptible to negative publicity. Innova Market Insights has reported a recent surge in products marketed on an “ethical” platform. Products with this type of positioning accounted for over 14% of global launches tracked in each half year period since 2010.
It should be noted, however, that while consumers care about the environment and ethically-produced goods, they still demand convenience. They are increasingly buying products that enable them to “do good,” while still being convenient. In addition, simple, clear, and transparent labels on products send the transparency message to consumers.
- Health Traffic Jam. A lack of innovation in functional foods has resulted from the December 2012 deadline for the removal of EU non-approved claims from packaging labels. While global functional food launches are steady, Europe’s crack down on health claims has reduced the number of launches in recent years. Companies are focusing on switching marketing messages behind approved claims (of which there are 220 in the EU), with a greater emphasis on the inherent benefits of certain foods and ingredients and a longer term investment in future personalized nutrition products. An example of this in the United States is Jamba Juice’s All Natural Greek Yogurt Superfruit Smoothies in Acai Super-Antioxidant flavor. This product delivers functionality with its inherent naturalness.
- Gray but Healthy will be a focus for an aging population, driven by rising consumer understanding of the role of a healthy diet in extending the active years. This will be reflected in greater interest in cleverly-marketed anti-aging products, including the move of well-established medical brands into mainstream aisles and the increasing promotion of inherent nutrients on an aging well platform.
Cognitive health remains a top concern for the aging population. An increasing number of products are marketing to prevent this age-related concern with natural ingredients. An example in the United States is The Tea Spot’s Meditative Mind Loose White Tea. White tea is promoted as increasing mental awareness, enhancing focus, calming, and also has anti-aging benefits.
- Just Say “No.” Free-from claims are becoming increasingly prevalent. Gluten-free is now relatively mainstream, with lactose-free set to follow suit as awareness of problems associated with nutrient intolerance rises and technological advances improve the quality and availability of a whole range of products. General Mills has entered the lactose-free category with its Yoplait Lactose-Free Yogurt. “No” products also encompass meat-free lines, with technology allowing the development of innovative vegetarian foods, as well as fat-, sugar-, and salt-free alternatives.
- “Natural” Cracks Emerge after years of solid growth for products marketed on a natural platform. Lawsuits and regulatory pressure are rising over concerns about the definition of “natural” and whether highly processed foods should be using that description. As a result, some companies are switching to “additive-/preservative-free” positionings, while the use of GM-free claims is also growing in popularity.
The other five trends identified by Innova Market Insights include: Protein Overdrive; Beating the Sugar Demon; Sensory Experience; More with Less; Interest at the Extremes.
Innova Market Insights