The research, conducted with HealthFocus International, highlighted the significant market opportunity in plant-based food and the connection to many of the important trends shaping the American diet. In addition to standard demographic data, the study dives deep into six consumer groups using a proprietary health and wellness segmentation model. Learning the needs and demands of these different consumer groups will lead to a deeper understanding of the evolving and fragmented market, according to DuPont.
The research revealed that more than half (52%) of U.S. consumers are eating more plant-based foods and beverages, while the number rises to two-thirds (65%) globally. It is important to make a distinction between those also reducing animal protein and those keeping animal protein consumption the same as the market becomes more complex and fragmented.
“There is a bright immediate future for this megatrend,” said Greg Paul, PhD, MBA, marketing leader, beverage industry, at DuPont Nutrition & Health. “There is a seismic shift occurring in eating habits globally, creating a significant market opportunity. Most important, our research reveals that for most consumers, this has moved beyond experimentation into a permanent change brought on by health, lifestyle, and social factors.”
Other important insights from the research include:
- Almost 60% of respondents said their change to plant-based food was permanent or they hoped it was permanent.
- Taste was cited as the top response as a barrier to consuming plant-based food.
- All consumer segments in the model—Health Helpers, Weight Strugglers, Health Wise, Taste Driven, Good Life, and Just Food—said eating plant-based food makes them feel healthier.