Plant based, clean label, “less and more”, and “power ingredients” such as grains, seeds, cocoa and vegetable and fruit fillings, are the top healthy food trends for 2020, as predicted by Puratos.
The predictions follow the recent launch of Puratos’ global Taste Tomorrow trend report; the world’s largest bakery, patisserie and chocolate consumer survey. The report unveils in-depth insights into global and local consumer behaviors, attitudes and choices. Its findings confirm that living a healthy lifestyle is more important to consumers than ever before and predicts the specific trends set to grow in the year ahead.
Jo Greengrass, sales director, Puratos UK says: “Trust, the environment, veganism and taste, underpin the healthy food trends of 2020. Brands and businesses which can demonstrate transparency and credible environmental initiatives, as well as offering high quality products, will be those to benefit. With health only set to rise higher on the agenda, businesses should look to promote ‘power ingredients’, source responsibly and re-formulate to maximize chances of success in the 12 months ahead and beyond”.
Veganism is one trend that is set to continue to build in 2020 and is now considered beyond a trend by many. Our Taste Tomorrow research reveals that vegan food is increasingly seen as good for the environment and health, with 20% of people buying vegan/vegetarian food on a weekly basis and 24% expecting to buy more in the future. 38% believe vegan food has a positive impact on the environment and 69% see plant-based products as a solution to prevent or solve food shortages.
These results highlight the strength of the trend and the importance of the environmental benefit of this lifestyle choice to the consumer. It is therefore in brands’ best interests to share how they are supporting the environment and maintain a strong dialogue with an audience that can only grow.
The trend for transparency, focus on health and greater interest in what goes into food has led to consumers checking labels more than ever before. 86% of people said they did this in 2019; an increase since the previous Taste Tomorrow report in 2015. Puratos UK predicts this to grow further in 2020 and demand for clean label formulations to increase as a result.
36% of people currently check labels for details on preservatives and the same number look for details on the source of a product, whilst 33% search for information on artificial colorings and flavorings. With this in mind, brands and business should highlight any claims connected to these concerns on pack, in store and on social media and look to re-formulate where possible and appropriate.
Less and More
For consumers, healthy food is about both ‘less’ and ‘more’, with 70% of consumers saying health is about removing ingredients and 61% saying it is about adding them.
With sugar and salt key focuses for the NHS, media and actions groups, Puratos expects customer interest in both to grow further in 2020. Brands and business should ensure they work to reduce salt and sugar where possible and appropriate.
Fiber is one nutrient which looks set to grow in favor in 2020. With the most recent UK National Diet and Nutrition Survey (NDNS) revealing that most adults need to increase their intake , brands and business can look to incorporate higher fiber ingredients into formulations and highlight ‘source of’ or “high fiber” claims on pack, in order to tap into this trend.
Grains and Seeds
The Taste Tomorrow report polled consumers on how tasty and healthy they thought certain ingredients were and whether they thought these ingredients were present in bread, chocolate, and pastry and patisserie. Grains and seeds scored highly for both health and taste, but not all consumers were aware that these could be present in bread, with just 54% saying they thought grains and seeds could be incorporated. This presents an opportunity to educate a relatively high percentage of consumers on the fact these ingredients can be present in bread and their health and taste benefits.
Vegetable and Fruit Fillings
Vegetable and fruit fillings look set to grow as ‘patisserie power ingredients’ in 2020. As well as increasing the health credentials of finished goods, these fillings also offer taste benefits and both are of course associated with ‘naturalness’. Promoting any claims around health, naturalness or provenance, associated with fillings is likely to prove beneficial in 2020.
Cocoa also looks set to become a “patisserie power ingredient”. Awareness of the benefits of cocoa is increasing, with 9 out of 10 consumers now saying they think cocoa offers both health and flavor benefits, compared to 8 out of 10 in 2015. The percentage of cocoa in chocolate is important to consumers, with this being the fourth most important buying consideration for chocolate, ahead of even health and freshness, so bakers and manufacturers would do well to promote this.