The report identified 10 key trends in recent product development initiatives: ingredient innovation, added functionality, new flavors, organic/natural positioning, premium positioning, use of plant-based proteins, low-fat/low-sugar products, brand redesign, product reformulation and portfolio expansion by high-protein variant.
"Once a relatively niche market targeted at athletes and bodybuilders, the trend toward consuming protein has since become mainstream, with a range of new consumers embracing the nutrient for its beneficial health properties," commented Zenith Market Intelligence Director Esther Renfrew. "A wave of innovative high-protein beverages has broadened the consumer base, giving rise to new segments and creating an entirely new identity for the market.”
From high-protein coconut waters to high-protein beer, the report brings together the latest in product development, clarifying the trends and common themes in product innovation that are shaping the market.
"High-protein products are no longer associated with just generating muscle mass,” she said. “The nutrient is now being marketed as essential to maintaining more general good health. Ready-to-drink protein optimally facilitates this trend, offering a convenient and easy means of increasing protein intake, in a way which complements consumers' busy lifestyles, particularly those of Millennials.”