Today's mindful consumers
“...consumers are becoming increasingly mindful in their food choices, wanting to know what is in their foods in order to make decisions about health, sustainability and ethical issues”
." The Conversation.
2. Here's the big one: health
If you look at recent industry NPD and growing areas of consumer demand for food and beverages, one thing is for sure: health is having a moment. Australian shoppers today are looking to balance their busy lives with a healthy dose of self-care.
Here's a few of the key areas...
Feel-good treats: indulgence and me-time without the guilt. Treats with built in health benefits such as vegetable desserts and protein-filled chips.
Food is not only fuel but it’s also now seen as medicine. However, this doesn’t mean shoppers don’t want to indulge every now and again to balance their fast-paced lives.
Consumers are looking for retailers with a greater assortment of fresh, convenient and healthy food.
As we discussed in the blog last month HERE, Woolworths have been upping their game in this space.
Woolies has made changes to store layouts, implemented product innovation, technology (e.g. screens), displays with helpful nutritional advice, ‘cut today, sold tomorrow’ fresh veg, and more.
As seen in the UK, lots of stores are adopting a 'market-like' feel to showcase fresh, healthy options or special dietary products.
All of these elements help educate and make it easier for shoppers to make healthy choices.
“Many people now have an insight into their personal health through apps and trackers. Knowing the steps you've taken or calories you’ve burnt can affect your eating choices. Or, for example, knowing how well you slept the night before might influence your choice to have more caffeine, and so forth. This is becoming particularly interesting as we see cross-interaction between different technologies... your smart watch knows the quality of your sleep and tells your coffee machine to make you a drink.” Rebecca Tait, Research Manager at PLAY.
Meat reduction, plant-based diets and plant protein alternatives. The food of the future: lab-developed burgers, more and more plant-based milk alternatives, ancient grains (rather than your classic rice and cous cous!).
Natalie Mitchell, Head of Brand Development and Product Innovation at Waitrose UK.
“2018 is likely to see the range of fake foods grow from the small health foods section into an aisle. With veganism and other health diets on the rise, there is a need for the same taste, texture and variety that we are used to but without the traditional core ingredient.” Rebecca Tait, Research Manager at PLAY.
Health drinks and snacks. The use of botanicals, herbs, spices and probiotics to make drinks feel sophisticated and healthful, or snack bars with innovative flavours or ingredients which bring specific health benefits.
“Added health benefits are going from a bonus to a must with many beverages such as kombucha being launched into supermarkets and not just speciality stores, this is likely to also spill over into foods.” Rebecca Tait.
3. Personal and meaningful
This trend ties all of the previous points together… this year and beyond will be about connection, personalisation and stories as well as social consciousness, health and making mindful choices.
If you'd like to learn more about the future of food and drink in Australia, get in touch to let us know your core area of interest and we'll be happy to explore it in a weekly blog.
Wishing you all the best for a successful 2018!