“Consumers are switching to regular foods to maintain weight wellness, which is creating a wealth of opportunities for big brands and entrepreneurs alike,” said Julian Mellentin, author of the report.
“People’s desire to maintain a healthy weight and a trim figure is the biggest influence on the key trends in food and health, driving many of the trends in this report,” he said. “Improving digestive health and avoiding a bloated stomach to maintain a good figure are key reasons why people adopt, for example, a gluten-free or lower-gluten diet, avoiding refined carbs and trying to consume more good grains.”
Marketing products that have “naturally functional” ingredients and benefits remains the “king of trends,” as it has been since 2005. Additional trends predicted by New Nutrition Business included: Snackification; Protein; Good Carbs vs. Bad Carbs; Dairy 2.0, the category’s rebirth as a whole food; Free-From, normalizing avoidance of certain ingredients; Sugar, the new dietary demon; Fat, and avoiding low-fat claims; and Digestive Wellness.
Stressing the importance of the “Good Carbs” trend, New Nutrition Business predicted that the sprouted grain category is poised for growth.
“By taking grains and sprouting them before using them in snacks and other foods, they’re delivering ‘good grains’ that are naturally gluten-free for people who want to avoid bad carbs and snack more healthily,” said Mr. Mellentin.
The market is developing fastest in the U.S., where sales of products featuring sprouted grains are on track for more than $250 million by 2018.
Driving interest in sprouted grains is a small but growing percentage of mainstream consumers who are reducing their consumption of carbohydrates, in particular foods made from wheat and corn. In 2014, a survey conducted by Way Better with the Natural Marketing Institute found that 17% of Americans were already aware of products with sprouted grains and seeds.
The number of new product launches with sprouted grains was just 19 in 2014, according to Mintel, but numbers are growing fast.