Rise of the Flexitarian Consumer Creates New Market Opportunity

636034807171075069veganburger.jpg

07 Jul 2016 --- Innova Market Insights data shows a +60% rise in global food and beverage launches using a vegetarian claim between 2011 and 2015. Launches featuring the term “vegan” also rose to account for 4.3% of total introductions in 2015, up from 2.8% in 2014 and just 1.5% in 2012.

The trend towards reducing meat intake in the diet has led to the emergence of new opportunities to target vegans, vegetarians, non-meat eaters and non-red-meat eaters. New opportunities are emerging too for so-called flexitarians, who mainly eat a plant-based diet, but do occasionally eat meat. Strategies to harness the power of the flexitarian consumer will be among the key trends presented by Innova Market Insights at the IFT 2016 Taste The Trend pavilion in Chicago (booth #2884).

“This trend represents a growing opportunity for high-quality meat alternatives, which is also being reflected in the 24% average annual growth in global meat substitute launches recorded between 2011 and 2015,” reports Lu Ann Williams, Director of Innovation at Innova Market Insights.

Williams told FoodIngredientsFirst: “We did some research on the trend and we asked consumers whether they eat meatless meals once a week or more? The biggest group to say so were Germans and this is a really interesting insight. This is the market that is leading the world in terms of innovation and meatless consumption.”Click to Enlarge

Germany is currently leading the flexitarian trend, with high levels of innovative NPD in meat alternatives and meat substitutes, and 69% of consumers claiming to eat meatless meals once a week or more.

“In the UK , 53% of consumers are claiming to eat meatless meals once a week, so there is still a lot of opportunity there,” says Williams.

The US is lagging behind on just 38%, although 120 million Americans do already eat meatless meals, so this must represent a major opportunity.

The trend towards flexitarian, vegetarian and vegan diets has accelerated the move toward the use of plant-based proteins as meat substitutes. The majority of meat substitutes are still soy- or wheat-protein based, but products are evolving with alternative protein ingredients such as egg, pea, ancient grains and nuts.

“We also found that consumers see dairy as a good alternative to meat, 49% of consumers opt for  breaded cheeses or grilled halloumi for example,” says Williams,  “What is also happening is that we have more or a segmentation in the market, we have substitutes and various NPDs in the alternative meat sector.”

“Paradoxically, another key area of opportunity in meat substitutes may be in targeting meat eaters as much as vegetarians,” notes Williams. “While many vegetarians may opt for a diet rich in vegetables and beans, meat eaters may turn to meat substitutes if the product is right. Instead of just finding alternatives, technological solutions also need to be focusing on the development of meat substitutes closely mimicking the taste and texture of meat products.”

“The Impossible Burger has gained a lot of interest in media attention recently, with flexitarians looking for something that has that meat feel but is made from plant based produce,” she added.

This July, the Impossible Burger will become available for public consumption for the first time. The company, Jardinière, a tony San Francisco restaurant, will begin by offering burgers on special occasions, while a small number of restaurants will start selling the Impossible Burger later this summer, starting in New York. Production is limited – the company could manufacture a million pounds this year, less than a tenth of a percent of US beef consumption – so the rollout is calibrated to target high-end diners first. According to Impossible Foods, the retail price has not been set.

by Elizabeth Kenward

To contact our editorial team please email us at editorial@cnsmedia.com

Innova Market Insights

Collapse

The Innova Database is the product of choice for the whole product development team. See what food manufacturers are doing around the world in a way you never thought possible.

Track trends, competitors, ingredients and flavors. It contains excellent product pictures, search possibilities and analysis. Get the world of new products on your desk, set e-alerts, examine category activity, find new ideas, be inspired.

In today's fast moving environment this is a resource you cannot afford to be without.

Related Articles

Business News

Monsanto glyphosate traces show up in US breakfast cereals and snack bars

17 Aug 2018 --- Laboratory tests commissioned by US activists Environmental Working Group (EWG), have revealed that glyphosate – the active herbicide in Monsanto’s Roundup weedkiller used in commercialized agriculture all over the world – has been found in a raft of oat-based breakfast cereals and snack bars.

Food Ingredients News

Fish Dependency: Danish production only meets two-thirds of national demand

16 Aug 2018 --- Denmark officially reached its annual “Fish Dependency Day,” yesterday (August 15), 30 days earlier than in 2017 and six months earlier than in 1990, according to a recently published report from the New Economics Foundation. Fish Dependency Day is the date on which a country begins relying on fish from outside its own waters to meet demand, due to depletion of domestic supplies through a combination of overfishing, mismanagement and domestic demand. According to Our Fish, Denmark is only able to produce fish which meets two-thirds of the national demand.

Food Ingredients News

Constellation Brands invests US$4bn in cannabis industry, expands partnership with Canopy Growth

16 Aug 2018 --- Corona beer maker, Constellation Brands and cannabis business, Canopy Growth Corporation, have announced a significant expansion of their partnership to position Canopy Growth as the global leader in cannabis production. Constellation Brands will increase its ownership interest in Canopy Growth by acquiring 104.5 million shares, thereby achieving approximately 38 percent ownership of the existing Constellation warrants. The transaction is subject to customary closing conditions and is expected to close by the end of October 2018.

Food Ingredients News

Sustainable spices: Olam highlights traceability platforms

15 Aug 2018 --- As the demand toward highlighting traceability around spices continues to grow, Olam International is working on plant-based innovations and tapping into the opportunity to market sustainable spices. Innovation within the diverse company, which this week released its latest financial results, includes new formulation solutions for plant-based alternatives within chocolate milk.

Food Ingredients News

The flavors shake-up: Ethnic, rich and authentic options pushed to the fore

14 Aug 2018 --- The last few months have seen a real shake-up in the flavors space with International Flavors & Fragrances (IFF) beginning a new chapter with the combination of Frutarom. The news came as Swiss-headquartered market leader Givaudan completed the acquisition of 40.5 percent of the shares of Naturex for €135 per share, with plans underway to take complete control of the natural ingredients supplier. The acquisition of such a significant shareholding in Naturex fits with Givaudan’s 2020 strategy to expand its offering to deliver natural products to customers.

More Articles