As consumers increasingly opt for healthy options that are quick and convenient, Convenience World takes a look inside the P&C channel to find out what’s trending and what’s here to stay, and how store owners can meet consumers’ rising health demands.
According to Better Brands Group owner and Director Luke Driver, some of the key health and consumer trends influencing this category within P&C include snacking, the increasingly health-conscious consumer, veganism, and taste/flavour expectations.
“Modern life has redefined mealtimes,” he says. “The on-the-go crowd has led to an onslaught of consumers seeking high protein snacks as their meal replacement.”
Mr Driver adds that consumers are becoming more “savvy” and demanding “products that fit within a certain nutritional standard”.
“The customer understands nutritional information and seeks clean labels valuing levels of protein, fibre and sugar content, [as well as products that are] gluten, preservative and nut free,” he says.
“With veganism becoming more mainstream and plant-based diets surging in popularity, the demand for vegan snacking options has grown exponentially. People are increasingly interested in the health benefits of a vegan lifestyle, as well as dairy-free options for diet intolerances.”
Showcasing healthy options
Foodservice Australia Exhibition Manager Liz Shaw is promoting the organisation’s upcoming trade show in the annual series that alternates between Melbourne and Sydney.
She says Foodservice Australia 2021, to be held in June in Melbourne, “will focus on bringing the industry together to reconnect and rebuild”.
Ms Shaw says the health trend has had a huge impact on the convenience sector.
“Consumers are now expecting to see the range of available options include healthier alternatives,” she says.
Protein-rich products and healthy beverage alternatives are key innovation areas to watch.
“High-protein snacks have been a hit with health enthusiasts for a long time now, but the innovation in this space is increasing,” says Ms Shaw. “It’s now easier to find protein packed into all kinds of snacks, including chips, chocolate, ice cream and yoghurt, as well as the more traditional bars – and let’s not forget those plant-based protein bars.
Read more about healthy options in the March/April issue of Convenience World.