Growing demand for more natural, lower calorie, lower fat, sugar-free, veggie products…It is becoming widespread trend among today’s health-conscious consumers. Undoubtedly, consumers’ sophisticated expectations have generated profitable target market for food & beverage industry and triggered them to specialize niche product offerings. People who are tend to restrict their diet or those who have nutrition intolerance create a high-involment consumer group all around the world. This affects not only food label cues but also reflects credit upon fresh and packaged food industry. Product advertisements that exploit health and wellness trends of consumers have come into the forefront through attractive label designs.
Global Consumer Trends
The target market of that growing industry is obviously extensive: Baby boomers who are trying to prolong their longevity, consumer segment who pays careful attention to certified organic ingredients, Generation Xers who tend to switch their eating habits with products including low sodium and low calorie alternatives and also hypersensitive consumer segment who are avoiding gluten or lactose…All create considerable continuous purchasing behaviour in the sector. These health-conscious consumers who aspire to better quality, more organic or ‘free from’ product (especially women) tend to spend more time in the supermarket and they have more willingness to pay more for healthier products. As we can see Global Consumer Survey, the market has been expanded loads of options appealing different kinds of consumer segments (2015).
Let’s assume that you are paying moderate attention to looking ingredient labels of your products before purchasing. Is there any targeting segment defining your purchasing behaviour in Global Consumer Trends or are you involving more than one segments? If your answer is ‘Yes!’ you are lucky since you have bunch of brand options on the supermarket shelves. To be realistic, if you took a stroll through supermarket aisles with your current expectation a decade ago, you could hardly find ‘fat free’, ‘light’, ‘sugar free’ brand titles as much as today.
‘Healthy’ Revenue for Brands
The World’s pioneer nutrition, Health and Wellness company, Nestle, has strengthened its competitive advantage through providing preferential consumers with extended ‘free from’ category and wellness products. While, in 2010, company’s 39% of sales relied upon mainly snacks, it has now increased by health-related dairy portfolio representing 42% of whole sales. The famous brand experienced profitable growth with its non-diary milk and yogurt alternatives and it will be expected to outperform with its new health portfolio in the future (Lianne van den Bos 2016).
The More ‘Health-oriented’ Consumption…The More Creative Marketing
Beyond any doubt, growing household income, highest level of literacy and also social media create natural and organic lover consumer mass. By the virtue of health-minded eaters who care a lot about fitness and regular exercise, even basic food consumption turned into more complicated dietary pattern in many people’s lives. Besides those who keep eye on their diet, many consumers pay lots of attention the items on the label to count how many calorie they will intake. Therefore, food and beverage brands give more place to positive product attributes such as ‘protein added’ or ‘calcium added’ and they particularly note ‘absence of negatives’ like carbohydrates and sugars. Furthermore, many large discounter and grocery stores are recognising this growing trend and they would like to group preferential foods in special sections to get directly nutritious-conscious segments attention. Special display strategies and cross-merchandising of these product with health-related supplements get brands’ revenue rapidly up.
Particularly, many brands launch many products by using ‘natural’ and ‘organic’ nutrition buzzwords to create trustworthy brand perception. However, to what extend are we aware of the difference between ‘organic’ and ‘natural’? Even though companies are not allowed to deceive consumers, there are a big difference between these two words! While organic products relay highly on regulated food manufacturing system, ‘natural’ is unregulated word that you can buy almost everything under that claim from chips to soft drinks (Global Consumer Trends 2015).
Growing Awareness of Probiotic Consumption
The rising health awareness of consumers gives an ample opportunity to another growing market: ‘probiotics’. Today’s probiotics in other words living bacteria, which are believed to boost human health become a very popular concept among wellness-oriented consumers. Increasing expectation like aids in digestion and strong immunity lead industry to use outrageous marketing gimmicks in their brand positioning. With the growing rate of overweight population and chronic diseases all around the world, probiotic brands launched many new products sophisticated with different kind of use and specialized ingredient options.
Danone’s Activia, which is one of the most successful probiotic brand, came up with countless variants reduced sugar content in both drinkable and spoonable yogurt formats. Marketing with no sugar, no fat and no artificial sweetener added labels make Activia a perfect snack for weight conscious consumer. Additionally, Heavenly Blush, launched in Indonesia in 2013, is another good example with modern probiotic yogurts targeting upper income consumers with diabetes or prediabetes. Even though some brands come up with expensive options, consumers who need to buy these products show continuous interest in probiotics (Euromonitor International 2016).
Growing Trend ‘Free-From’ Market
As we can see, ‘free from’ is one of the most upward trends among preferential consumption behaviour, accounting for over US$ 8.5 billion sales in 2015 (Euromonitor International 2016).Increasing ‘healthy product’ expectation of today’s consumer generates obvious opportunity for manufacturer in product diversification . Many famous brands compete with themselves to create more attention grabbing labels.
It is worth to mention that we expose in our every shopping experience these mass marketing and we are being overloaded with subconsciously diverse wellness trends. The main question is that: Do you still follow your same shopping routine or are you turning into one of the specific target groups of these wellness brands??
Euromonitor International Global Consumer Trends survey 2015, Global Consumer Trends: Summary of 2015 Survey Results, retrieved 27 March 2016, <http://www.portal.euromonitor.com.ezproxy-f.deakin.edu.au/portal/analysis/contentlink>.
Lianne van den Bos 2016, Nestlé 2015 FY Results – Nestlé Succeeds in Becoming Healthier, but is it Getting too Lean to Stay Ahead? , Euromonitor International, retrieved 27 March 2016, <http://www.portal.euromonitor.com.ezproxy-f.deakin.edu.au/portal/analysis/tab.>
Euromonitor International 2016, The Future of Prebiotics (Part Two): Chronic Disease and Science Versus Regulation, Global Head of Health and Wellness Research, retrieved 27 March 2016, < http://www.portal.euromonitor.com.ezproxy-f.deakin.edu.au/portal/analysis/tab>.