12 Million Brits Will be Meat-Free By 2021

According to research from shopping comparison website Finder.com, 12 million UK consumers (23% of the population) say that they will be vegetarian, vegan or pescatarian by 2021. There are already 6.7 million following a completely meat-free diet, and with an additional 5.3 million over the next 12 months would mean a growth of 79%.

The UK has a population of 66.4 million. Over a million more people intend to become vegan over the next 12 months, this trend follows on from a successful year for the dietary lifestyle. Finder’s research estimates that since the start of 2019, the number of vegans in the UK increased by 419,000 (62%). This trend is set to keep growing and in fact the number of vegans is expected to double by the end of 2021.

However, it seems not many were able to stick to a meat-free over the past year. Of the 5.2 million that hoped to completely cut out meat by the end of 2019, only 5% (236,000) have done so. One explanation for this could be a rise in the awareness of flexitarianism.

Millennials are the most meat-free generation at the moment – 15% of this generation said that they currently go without meat by following a pescatarian, vegetarian or vegan diet. By 2021 gen Z could overtake millennials, with 35% of gen Z aiming to be meat-free compared to 32% of millennials.

Georgia-Rose Johnson, shopping and travel specialist at Finder.com said: “In 2019 climate change received a lot more media exposure than it’s ever had before and highlighted that meat-free diets can help to improve current climate issues. With this in mind it’s great to see that such a large amount of people are aiming to be meat-free by the end of this year. Especially the number of those who are aiming to be vegan, with our research showing veganism grew by 62% in the UK over the last year.”

Source: Vegconomist

Sweets and Snacks Innovation Targets Health, Sustainability and Adventure Themes

With consumers often turning to more sustainable and healthier food choices, innovation in the confectionery and snacking categories is prominent. Between 2018 and 2019, the number of global consumers who said that they expect companies to invest in sustainability increased from 65 to 87 percent, according to an Innova Market Insights Consumer Survey (2019). With this in mind, the market researcher is now turning its attention to how trends such as sustainability, health and adventure, are impacting the highly innovative sweets and snacks categories.

Having announced its Top Ten Trends for 2020 towards the end of last year, Innova Market Insights pegged “Storytelling: Winning with Words” as its top trend for the year, driven by the increased interest in consumers discovering the origin stories behind their food. When it comes to sweets and snacks, value can be found not only in ingredient provenance but also in small batch or artisanal production and even in a celebration of different cultures, such as snacks sold on authentic international platforms, the marker researcher highlights.

Moreover, Innova’s #2 trend for 2020 “The Plant-Based Revolution” is a significant movement rooted in demands for more natural, healthy and eco-friendly products. Two-thirds of global consumers say that they specifically want to avoid products with ingredients that are difficult to understand (Innova Consumer Survey, 2019). As a result, more recognizable ingredients from the natural world are very much in favor in snacking development. Vegan products are also extending their reach, while snack bars remain important carriers for many healthy plant-based ingredients.

It is also clear that “The Sustain Domain” is another strong trend for this year. The sweets and snacks market is tackling this issue in various ways. In Japan, for example, paper wrappers are replacing plastic on Kit Kat chocolate bars, while food waste is also an issue which is being addressed, with less-than-perfect fruits and vegetables appearing as ingredients in healthy sweets and snacks.

Consumers are increasingly looking for “The Right Bite” as they attempt to balance busy lives with staying healthy. Snacking is a crucial part of this as snacks can deliver useful nutrition when there is no time for a proper sit-down meal. One area that is expected to become more important is mood food, with active ingredients in snacks helping consumers to relax, improve their sleep or alternatively feel more energized to face the day. At the same time, sweeter, indulgent treats can deliver comfort in a stressful world.

The fifth key trend for this year is “Tapping into Texture,” which is particularly relevant to sweets and snacks as texture can be an important tool in delivering novelty. Seven in ten global consumers think that texture gives food a more interesting experience and this is particularly evident in younger age groups (Innova Consumer Survey 2019). A total of 56 percent of those aged 26-35 say that they care more about the texture experience than they do about the ingredient list, compared with only 37 percent of over-55-year-olds, so textural twists can be a useful tool when targeting the young.

Source: Food Ingredients 1st

What Will We Eat in 2020? Something Toasted, Something Blue

Kim Severson wrote . . . . . . . . .

If you’re the sort of person who uses the annual avalanche of food and drink predictions as an anthropological window into the state of the American psyche, prepare for a stripped-down, no-nonsense 2020.

Mold and sobriety will be popular. Porridges like jook and arroz caldo are the new comfort foods. Saving the planet will have a new urgency, so bring your own mug to the coffee shop and learn to embrace the term “plant-based.”

“There is a sense that the rose-colored glasses are off,” said Andrew Freeman, president of AF&Co., the San Francisco consulting firm that for 12 years has published a food and hospitality trend report. This year’s is titled “We’re Not in Kansas Anymore.”

“The world just feels different,” Mr. Freeman said. “The labor market is tight, the political landscape is a mess. All of us are trying to navigate it.”

That doesn’t mean we can’t have some fun, though. If the forecasters can be believed, joy will be found in towers of buttered toast piled with ice cream, sourdough doughnuts, CBD-infused everything and even more fried chicken sandwiches.

Here, then, is a sampling of what could be in store for 2020.

Country of the Year: Japan

That recent Instagram uptick in soufflé pancakes and the fish-shaped ice cream cones called taiyaki isn’t a coincidence. With the 2020 Summer Olympics set for Tokyo and a rise in travel to Japan, the country’s influence will extend into the American culinary landscape, said Amanda Topper, associate director of food service for Mintel, the global market research company. Trendspotters also predict more interest in food from India, with a special emphasis on spicy Keralan dishes built from rice, coconut and fish, as well as foods from West Africa, Vietnam and Laos.

Cause of the Year: The Planet

As farmers grapple with climate change and consumers grow increasingly concerned about the environmental impact of what they eat, restaurants and food producers are doubling down on earth-friendly ingredients and practices. Vegan dishes and meat alternatives will show up on more menus, both fine-dining and fast-food. Regenerative farmers, who focus on soil health, are the new organic farmers. Chefs are exploring how to cook cover crops like peas and buckwheat, which regenerative farmers plant between harvests as a way to improve soil, control weeds and sequester carbon. Look for more edible and biodegradable packaging, and reusable everything, from cups to cutlery. “The companies that will win in the next 10 years will be those that fuel the new era of conscious consumption,” said Jenny Zegler, the associate director of food and drink research for Mintel.

Color of the Year: Blue

The hue started catching the eye of tastemakers a few years ago, but this year blue and its moody sibling, indigo, are expected to color more food. Butterfly pea powder tea (the new matcha!) is showing up in moon milk, a sleep remedy that is the latest adaptation of ayurvedic tradition. Ube, a purple yam, is the new “It” root vegetable; orach, also called mountain spinach, could be the new kale. Pop culture seems to be driving this one: Pantone has declared classic blue its color of the year, and blue food plays an outsize role in the novels of Percy Jackson, whose musical “The Lightning Thief” is on Broadway.

Toasted

The latest star imported from Asian tea shops is brick toast, built from thick slices of pain de mie that are scored, buttered, toasted and covered in sweet custard, syrup or ice cream. Variations on the dish, sometimes called honey toast, abound in different parts of Asia. In Japan, where it is also called Shibuya toast after the Tokyo district where the style began, a substantial portion of a loaf is hollowed out and filled with squares of toasted bread, ice cream, syrup and fruit. The Taiwanese style is more subdued, topped with condensed milk, custard or cheese. A second cousin is kaya toast, popular in Singapore, made with a thick slab of salted butter and a jam of coconut and pandan leaves that is usually served with soft-boiled eggs.

Not Toasted

Low and no-alcohol drinks are in, but that doesn’t necessarily mean people want to face the next decade without a little help. Look for a rise in mood food and calming beverages awash in CBD or adaptogens, plants that may help relieve stress. “It’s not just a young person’s thing,” said Willa Zhen, a professor of liberal arts and food studies at the Culinary Institute of America. “I think we’re all anxious.”

Growing Up

This could be the year the children’s menu finally dies — or is at least radically re-engineered. Millennials, an unusually food-aware generation, are parents to more than half of the nation’s children. And as Americans opt for less processed food and more global flavors, chicken nuggets and mac and cheese may give ground to salmon fish sticks, agedashi pops and hemp pasta with ghee.

Generational Cooking

First-generation immigrants to America, and grandparents who live in other countries or have recently immigrated, will transform restaurant menus. This is part of a growing interest among chefs with mixed cultural backgrounds to create new dishes based on techniques and ingredients from both sides of the family.

Fresh Flours

Almond flour is so 2019. Look for alternative flours made from green bananas, sweet potatoes, cauliflower and watermelon seeds.

Tech Rescues

Artificial intelligence will flood restaurants, especially fast-food and quick-service operations, adjusting pricing in real time to accommodate fluctuations in supply and demand. Delivery apps and in-store menu boards will suggest foods in the same way Netflix recommends movies. Menu boards will use voice bots and face recognition software to customize and speed ordering. Unmanned rovers will bring you pizza; companies like Domino’s are testing them in Houston and some European cities, and robots are already bringing Dunkin’ doughnuts and Starbucks coffee to college students. Breakthroughs in food safety will result from better use of blockchain, a digital ledger that can track food as it works its way from the farm to the consumer.

And the Rest

  • Churros.
  • Flavored ghee.
  • Koji, the ancient mold responsible for miso and soy sauce.
  • Cantonese pineapple buns.
  • Makgeolli, the sparkling, fermented Korean rice liquor.
  • Puffed snacks made from vegetable peels.
  • Floral flavors.
  • Halloumi cheese.
  • Edible flowers and botanicals.
  • Cane sugar alternatives.
  • Food wrapped in bijao leaves.
  • Ice cream with hidden vegetables (think mint chocolate chip with puréed spinach).

Don’t be surprised if some of these fail to take hold. “The thing to remember is that it comes back to taste,” said Ms. Topper, of Mintel. “We can talk about various trends, but if it’s not something that first and foremost people want to consume, it won’t last.”

Source: The New York Times

Top Trends for 2020 Reflect Fragmented Consumer Demands

From cauliflower pizza to beetroot bread, convenient plant-based products are on a strong long-term growth trajectory, according to New Nutrition Business.

At the same time, while people opt for plants due to their natural functionality, they are still consuming meat too. Despite vocal attacks about health and sustainability credentials, which made it look as if the meat category was set for long-term decline, consumption has increased in both the U.S. and in Europe in recent years.

“Consumers’ perception of meat as a tasty and high-quality protein is driving the reinvention of meat and will secure its permanent place on the plate, and as a snack,” said Julian Mellentin, a consultant to the food and beverage industry and author of the report 10 Key Trends in Food, Nutrition and Health 2020. This annual trend analysis identified, for the first time, meat as a growth opportunity alongside plant-based.

“People want plants, but we’re not all turning into vegans,” said Mellentin. “In a world where consumers hold fragmented beliefs, there’s room for both plants and meat.”

“With plant-based getting all the attention, and meat under attack, creative meat producers are taking steps to reinvent their category, for example with sustainability, provenance and convenience,” he added. For example, U.S. sales of meat snacks grew 6.7% in 2019 to $4.5 billion (IRI).

And Nielsen data shows that meat brands that communicate about provenance, sustainability and animal welfare are growing fast and earning premium prices. U.S. sales of meat with health or environmental claims are growing rapidly, led by “organic” up 13.1% and “grass-fed” up 12.2%.

It’s a transformation that will be welcomed by consumers, who love to hear that something they enjoy is also good for them—as happened with red wine and chocolate. And they’re particularly receptive right now to positive messages about meat, said Mellentin, thanks to the influence of other key consumer trends identified in the report, including Protein, Lower-carb and the Rebirth of Fat.

Consuming fewer carbs—which by definition means eating more fat and/or protein, often in the form of meat—is growing in popularity, fueled by diet patterns such as keto. And low-carb eating is now legitimized by science. The American Diabetes Association recommends low-carb eating to fight diabetes and for weight management, and low-carbing is being adopted by doctors in the U.K.

Fear of the ultimate “bad carb”—sugar—is now mainstream. A massive 80% of U.S. consumers say they are limiting or avoiding sugar in their diets, and there are similar levels of concern in Europe and South America.

It’s a reflection of the fragmentation of consumer beliefs that, alongside a growing demand for low-carb products, honest indulgence is also a big growth driver: “In the midst of the focus on health and nutrition, let’s not forget that most people buy bakery products for pure pleasure,” said Mellentin. “Natural ingredients, Provenance and great taste all matter more than nutrition.”

Many cereals and granolas are discovering that they can gain sales by using inulin in order to offer consumers low-sugar products that also benefit digestive wellness. The Troo Granola brand in the U.K., for example, uses inulin syrup in its products because it serves both as a prebiotic and a sweetener, giving a more appealing taste to consumers while keeping sugar content down.

These twin benefits have caused demand for inulin to surge—the number of products launched that feature inulin doubled between 2012 and 2019.

Source: Nutraceuticals World

Nutrition Experts Forecast 2020 will Usher in the Ultimate Food Revolution

Move over highly processed foods and empty calorie carbs and make room for plant-based protein and nutrition-packed grains. These are just some of the food items that registered dietitian nutritionists (RDNs) predict consumers will be seeking out as we enter the next decade of the 21st century. We’ll likely be seeing more of a healthy revolution in 2020 and beyond, according to the annual Pollock Communications and Today’s Dietitian “What’s Trending in Nutrition” survey. With 1,259 RDNs responding, the “What’s Trending in Nutrition” survey reveals the hottest food and nutrition trends to look for in 2020 – including the increasingly-popular “keto” diet, fermented foods, non-dairy milks, and plant proteins – to name a few. This year green tea pushes out coconut products from the top 10 superfoods list, while a “healthy” label holds strong as a leading consumer purchase driver, surpassing cost and taste, yet again. All the data share a similar theme: a clean-label and healthy are in – highly-processed and complex ingredients are out.

Top 10 Superfoods for 2020

Powerhouse foods that provide desirable benefits from boosting gut health to blunting inflammation bookend this year’s top 10 list, with fermented foods – like yogurt, kefir, kombucha, sauerkraut, tempeh, kimchi and miso – at the #1 spot and flavonoid-rich green tea at #10. It’s no surprise, as consumers make gut health and reducing inflammation a priority in their quest for health and wellness. Non-dairy milks move up on the list to the #8 spot, underscoring the growing popularity of plant-based swaps.

Here’s the full list of superfood predictions for 2020:

  1. Fermented foods, like yogurt & kefir
  2. Avocado
  3. Seeds
  4. Exotic fruit, like acai, golden berries
  5. Ancient grains
  6. Blueberries
  7. Nuts
  8. Non-dairy milks
  9. Beets
  10. Green Tea

Top 10 Consumer Purchase Drivers

The survey results reveal consistency in the millennial-driven search for foods that fit their health and wellness lifestyles. When asked what motivates consumer food purchase decision, the findings show what food manufacturers should focus on to win these customers. Convenience, cost and taste have always been key, but for two years in a row now, “healthy” is second only to convenience, and tops cost and taste.

Here’s a look at the list of top 10 purchase drivers for 2020:

  1. Convenience
  2. Healthy
  3. Cost
  4. Taste
  5. Natural
  6. Clean-Label
  7. Organic
  8. Gluten Free
  9. Non-GMO
  10. Dairy free

“The 2020 survey results send a clear and consistent message. Consumers want to live healthier lives,” says Louise Pollock, President of Pollock Communications. “They have access to an incredible amount of health information, and they view food as a way to meet their health and wellness goals. Consumers are taking control of their health in ways they never did before, forcing the food industry to evolve and food companies to innovate in response to consumer demand.”

Keto is King – Deprivation Over Decadence

With the ketogenic (keto) diet reigning at the #1 spot again in 2020, this diet trend looks like it’s here to stay, followed by intermittent fasting and clean eating. While these diet trends may not be endorsed by all RDNs, it’s clear that consumers have no issue with elimination diets – scrapping foods they believe won’t help them meet their health, wellness and weight loss goals. Moderation is making way for deprivation and consumers have never felt better about it. They realize that what they eat affects how they feel. RDNs agree that consumers will be significantly reducing carbohydrates, grains and sugar in favor of vegetables, fat and meat in the coming year.

Top 5 Nutrition Recommendations from RDNs

According to the survey, celebrities, friends/family, blogs and social media are still the top sources of nutrition misinformation for consumers. Instead, consumers should follow the experts’ advice! RDNs give these five health and wellness eating tips for 2020:

  1. Eat more servings of vegetables per day
  2. Increase fiber intake
  3. Limit highly processed foods or fast foods
  4. Limit foods with “added sugars”
  5. Choose non-caloric drinks, like unsweetened tea and coffee

Source: Pollock Communications