‘Better For You’ the Global phenomenon
Last year we immersed ourselves in the ‘Better For You’ (BFY) behaviours and trends across food, beverages and confectionery. Using our experience of working with leading global brands to develop their BFY strategies, we identify 5 BFY themes impacting FMCG brands.
1. Conscious Consumption
Spotlight on sustainability
With both environment and social conscience establishing themselves as major cultural drivers, sustainability is firmly in the spotlight and will continue to shine. Whether it’s farming practice, crop cultivation, sourcing, manufacturing, packaging or waste reduction there is an increasing demand for greater transparency and for sustainability to be central to brands and their purpose. Sustainability lip service and tenuous add-ons are so yesteryear and the rising level of scrutinisation means faking it will have a negative effect.
The rising scrutiny of labels and brands are leading people to actively select natural and minimal processes, re-think everyday products and make informed choices based on both personal preferences and ethical issues. A new app released in the Netherlands this year is testament to this trend as it enables supermarket shoppers to scan and compare products and brands for their nutritional profile to make informed decisions at the shelf. You can find out more about them here: http://bit.ly/2lZikuh
2. Aspirational Health
Healthy living is the new currency of social status (proof of this can be found scrolling through Instagram), so it is not surprising that premium, provenance and artisanal qualities are making an impact in the Better For You arena. As brands seek to add value, differentiate from the mainstream and distance themselves from the ‘not-so-good’, there’s an opportunity for brands to craft new products and experiences that stand out and enable premuimisation.
The convergence of health and pleasure
The shift from health being a duty, to being a pleasurable way of life people aspire to hasn’t quelled people’s desire for healthy food that is enjoyable too. There is a growing desire for healthier treats. How brands strike the balance between health and indulgence is becoming increasingly critical.
3. Mood Food
Functional foods and purposeful nutrition
The link between what we eat and our health is shifting to new heights. Brands and consumers are looking at the medicinal qualities of food with greater focus and interest. It’s no longer just about what’s in it, people want to know what they are going to get out of it. Whether it’s adding protein to water or collagen to candy, people are looking for added functional benefits in their intake.
Good for mind, body and soul
Food and drink are no longer seen as just fuel for the body. The link between mind and gut are becoming clearer and consumers are beginning to appreciate the effect of diet on mood and mental health. There’s an opportunity for brands to deliver not only a great taste and eating experience but a feel good factor too.
Click here for our in-depth article about Mood Food…
4. Plant Power
Plant is hero
With increasing awareness and perception of plant based products as healthier and more sustainable, plant nutrition is challenging the way we create traditional products and are driving innovation in milks, yogurts, pots and ready-to-go products. Disrupted and upturned categories will open the way to new products, brands, new behaviours and new competition. Watch this space.
New and interesting alternatives
Alongside plant nutrition, which is making a clear impact and set to revolutionise the chiller cabinet, we’re looking forward to seeing new practices emerge from new kinds of bacteria and fermentation methods, new approaches to health and new forms of packaging and retail to support positive and sustainable ways of living.
Help me be in control
King-size portions and hidden calories have contributed to expanding waistlines over the past decade, making it harder for consumers to either resist or make healthy choices. It’s time to re-think portions and help people take greater control of their dietary intake. We are seeing hospitals ban snacks over 250 calories and in particular an increased scrutiny by the medical profession and government on brands and snacks that contribute to childhood obesity. If manufacturers and brands don’t act, the government is looking more likely to force change.
With increasing consumer desire and resolution to eat and drink less or make healthy, lighter choices, there is an opportunity for brands to deliver new and enjoyable food and drinks. The challenge will be in delivering quality, enjoyable and even indulgence ‘better for you’ experiences, which may require a shift in consumer behaviour and perceptions.
Click on our Journal entry to see our Mood Food highlights and stay tuned for more highlights on the other BFY trends over the course of the year.