Green Light for Vegetables20 Nov 2015
A key trend in healthy eating in recent years has been the move to increase the fruit and vegetable content of our diets, with a particular focus on children’s consumption levels. While increasing fruit consumption has been less of an issue and some initiatives have seen some success, efforts to increase vegetable consumption have not tended to fare so well. In response to this, cookbooks started to focus on ways to increase vegetable consumption in the diet, often by disguising it in some way in recipes for more popular options. This trend is also now being reflected in the packaged food market. Initiatives in recent years have mainly focused on getting more vegetables into our children’s diets, but there are now signs that this may be broadening out to focus on adults and the whole family.
Vegetables are beginning to appear in diverse products, particularly in the beverage aisle, where vegetable smoothies no longer seem to be products for the niche new-age consumer. In fact, the number of smoothies tracked with vegetables is growing significantly, with just 35 global launches recorded in the first half of 2011 and 170 tracked in the first half of 2015, following several years of strong growth. Innova Market Insights reported a +29% increase in vegetables in 2014 from 2013. The leading vegetables for 2014 were: carrot (37%), vegetables not specified (20%), tomato (17%), beetroot (12%), cucumber (7%), celery (6%) and kale (5%). Children can be very resistant to eating their veggies, and there is now a wide range of children’s meals featuring “hidden vegetables,” where they are pureed and blended with other ingredients, such that their use is not immediately obvious. Some of the smaller specialist baby and children’s food brands have been highly active in this area, including Annabel Karmel in a number of countries and Little Dish in the UK, which introduced a “hidden veg” tomato sauce containing vegetables. This has been sold on its own in a pot as well as used in selected recipes, most recently what is claimed to be the UK’s first “healthy” chilled pizza range aimed at toddlers.
But moving away from the children’s market, Orkla of Denmark launched its Pastella Vegetable Pasta range of fresh pasta with a 40% vegetable content in the first half of 2015, featuring Carrot, Broccoli & Peas and Cauliflower options. Claimed as a category innovation, the three styles of pasta feature the taste and texture of standard fresh pasta, but with the high vegetable content. Pastella already claims market leadership in fresh pasta overall in Denmark, Sweden, Finland and the Netherlands and is clearly hoping to further develop its position with this concept.
To accompany pasta, there has also been ongoing activity in hidden vegetables in pasta sauces, particularly using a tomato base with additional vegetables mixed in. In the UK, Mars’ Dolmio and Mizkan’s Ragu (formerly owned by Unilever) both have Smooth Hidden Vegetable options in their glass jars ranges, featuring at least one portion of the recommended 5-a-day in a smooth tomato-based sauce with added vegetables.
Lu Ann Williams, Innova Market Insights
Clean label comes ahead of brand
17 Oct 2018
Consumers are now more interested in clean label ingredients instead of product descriptions or the brand name itself, when shopping for new foods and drinks, according to a new global survey – highlighting the ongoing importance of clean label product...Read more
Is algae oil about to go mainstream?
11 Oct 2018
Algae oil boasts some impressive nutritional, environmental and functional benefits – and several companies appear to be on the verge of broadening its use. The question remains, will food manufacturers (and consumers) buy it?Read more
What does the future hold for sustainable palm oil?
3 Oct 2018
PepsiCo has become the latest major company to cut ties with a palm oil supplier because of alleged unethical practices, adding to growing demand for more sustainable production. Can the palm oil industry deliver?Read more
Ingredient innovation could give iced coffee a healthy boost
3 Oct 2018
Iced coffee is the fastest growing segment of the coffee category, and there is huge potential for ingredients with added health benefits to further drive its growth.Read more
Creating better texture in dairy alternatives
26 Sep 2018
The market for dairy alternatives continues to rise, but creating appealing, creamy textures that mimic traditional yoghurt or cheese can be a major stumbling block. For suppliers, this challenge has become fertile ground for innovation.Read more
Sustainable food is big business
26 Sep 2018
Sustainability in the food industry has become much more than a buzzword, as companies increasingly realise that it is vital to their long term profitability.Read more
Healthy aging: Spotlight on ingredients for joint health
19 Sep 2018
Glucosamine and chondroitin are commonly used ingredients for healthy joints, but with increased focus on improved mobility as the population ages, other innovative ingredients are gaining ground.Read more
Natural health trend boosts demand for botanical flavours
19 Sep 2018
Herbs, spices and extracts are gaining in popularity as consumers look for natural, recognisable flavours in their foods and drinks.Read more
Artisanal trend fuels ingredient innovation
13 Sep 2018
Craft and artisanal food and drink launches have seen a global CAGR of 28% over the past five years, according to Innova Market Insights, and suppliers are responding with investment in authentic, clean label ingredients.Read more
Consumer concern over sugar hits new high
6 Sep 2018
Sugar has replaced price as the top concern for UK consumers when buying food, according to a survey from the nation’s Food Standards Agency. Concern about sugar content is similarly high across Europe, so how should food and beverage companies respond...Read more
Are you a supplier
Here's what we can do for you
- Generate quality leads for your business
- Stay visible for 365 days of the year
- Receive product inquiries and respond to meeting requests directly
- Improve company online presence through Search Engine Optimisation