GLOBAL FOOD & DRINKS TRENDS OF 2018
Mintel has identified five key trends that reflect overarching 2018 consumer themes including trust, self-care, stress, individuality, and sustainability. Each of the trends has been chosen because it will have an impact on consumers, manufacturers, and r
Mintel identifies five key trends that reflect 2018 consumer themes
Mintel’s 2018 Global Food & Drink Trends are the result of collaboration between 60 of Mintel’s expert analysts in more than a dozen countries around the world. These global conversations have led to the identification of five key trends that reflect over arching 2018 consumer themes including trust, selfcare, stress, individuality, and sustainability. Each of the trends has been chosen because it will have an impact on consumers, manufacturers, and retailers across Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia Pacific, and the Americas in 2018.
The concepts are current but also incorporate elements that are evolutions of Mintel’s 2016 and 2017 Global Food & Drink Trend predictions, which continue to be significant influences in many categories and countries. To showcase the relevance of the five futurelooking trends, our analyst insights have been supported by evidence gathered from Mintel’s proprietary consumer research, innovative developments observed by Mintel’s expert team of trend spotters, and international food and drink products collected in Mintel Global New Products Database.
Many consumers around the world lack trust in regulatory systems, manufacturers, and even their fellow humans. This compounds a preexisting wariness about food and drink because of product recalls, scandals, and suspicion about large companies. The convergence of skepticism extends and enhances the existing consumer interest in the origins of food and drink that has been present (in some markets) for the past decade.
As shown by the growth in natural, ethical, and environmental claims, widespread distrust has increased the need for food and drink manufacturers to be forthcoming about their ingredients, production processes, and supply chains. This places pressure on manufacturers to offer thorough and honest disclosures about how, where, when, and by whom food and drink is grown, harvested, made, and/or sold. Food and drink transparency can take many different directions, but the various claims
serve a singular purpose: to help consumers feel more confident about the safety and purity of the food and drink that they purchase.
One great example of this is Nescafé Artesano Santuario Risralda. The Artesano line was launched by Nescafé in Colombia in 2017 and is supported by Nescafé Plan, which aims to improve the livelihoods of farmers and their communities and assist with the sustainable management of landscapes. (Source: www.facebook.com/ NESCAFE.CO)
As more consumers find modern life to be hectic and stressful, flexible and balanced diets will become integral elements of selfcare routines.
In 2018, individual definitions of self-care and balance will reinforce the need for a variety of food and drink products that present consumers with positive solutions that can be incorporated into their customised and flexible definitions of health and wellness. This creates openings in the market for a variety of formats, formulations, and portion sizes of food and drink that provide consumers with options that can fit their individual diet plan and their current—or aspirational—mood.
Indeed, self-care-focussed consumers will be looking for ingredients, products, and combinations that address nutritional, physical, or emotional benefits.
Consumers who are seeking more routine relief from stress will continue to change the definition of “permissible indulgence” from the rare over-the-top feast to more habitual better-for-you and flavourful treats that are indispensable elements of physically and emotionally balanced lifestyles.
For example,häagen-dazs Minis variety pack from Singapore contains three Green Tea & Almond and two Mango & Raspberry 40ml ice cream bars for portioncontrolled treats.
In 2018, the sound, feel, and satisfaction that texture provides will become more important to companies and consumers alike. Texture is the next facet of formulation that can be leveraged to provide consumers with interactive – and documentation-worthy – experiences.
From chewy beverages to complex formulations such as creamy ice cream with crispy chunks, texture can make products more captivating for consumers who continue to seek food and drink that is perceived as fresh, functional, filling, or simply fun. To align with this trend, brands can emphasise the qualities of existing products as evidenced by a South Korean ad for Ritz Crackers that showcased the noises made when opening and eating the crispy cracker. Texture also can be a key element for introductions such as the May 2017 limited-edition Firework Oreo in the US that contained popping candy inside the cream of the iconic sandwich cookie.
In particular, food and drink designed with additional textures has the potential to engage younger i-generation consumers who are hungry for experiences. These teens and young adults (ranging in age from 10 to
27 in 2018, depending on the region), have grown up with technology, which has made interactivity and documentation indispensable parts of everyday life. Teens were the target for the Australian launch of Cocacola’s carbonated soft drinks
IN DEFINITIONS 2018, INDIVIDUAL OF SELF-CARE AND BALANCE WILL REINFORCE THE NEED FOR A VARIETY OF FOOD AND DRINK PRODUCTS THAT PRESENT CONSUMERS WITH POSITIVE SOLUTIONS THAT CAN BE INCORPORATED INTO THEIR CUSTOMISED AND FLEXIBLE DEFINITIONS OF HEALTH AND WELLNESS.
THE EVOLUTIONS LATEST IN SHOPPING OFFER CONSUMERS PROMPT AND AFFORDABLE DELIVERY, A CURATED ADVENTURE COURTESY OF SUBSCRIPTION SERVICES, EASE OF AUTOMATIC REPLENISHMENT, AND SIMPLICITY OF SYNCHRONISATION WITH SMART HOME DEVICES.
Fanta Jelly that instructed consumers to “shake the can; wake the wobble” and Fanta Sour Tingle, which promises to awaken taste buds with its tangy flavour. The quest for experiences provides opportunities for multi sensory food and drink that uses unexpected texture to provide the i-generation, as well as consumers of all ages—with tangible connections to the real world as well as moments worth sharing either inperson or online.
A new era in personalisation is dawning due to the expansion of online and mobile food shopping. Motivated by the potential to save time and ideally money, consumers are sampling a variety of channels and technologies when shopping for food and drink. The latest evolutions in shopping offer consumers prompt and affordable delivery, a curated adventure courtesy of subscription services, ease of automatic replenishment, and simplicity of synchronisation with smart home devices. Busy consumers are drawn to e-commerce sites, mobile apps, voice control, and other online and mobile options because they are advantageous to their busy schedules and potentially their budgets.
Beyond convenience, technology will offer new possibilities for personalised recommendations of products and individually targeted promotions. For example, The Coca-cola Company has developed a smart vending machine that enables personalised offers and mobile purchases.
Chinese e-commerce company Alibaba introduced physical Hema markets where shoppers must use a mobile app that provides efficient and personalised shopping experiences. Meanwhile, e-commerce giant Amazon’s acquisition of Whole Foods Market and a partnership between Walmart and Google will likely provide consumers with targeted promotions, suggestions, and innovations that capitalise on online, as well as offline, shopping behaviours.
A technological revolution is playing out in manufacturing as some forward-looking companies are developing solutions to replace farms and factories with scientifically engineered ingredients and finished products.
Enterprising companies are building on advancements in technology, including stem cell cultures and 3D printing, to replicate nature in controlled environments. Developments that engineer food and drink staples such as laboratory-grown meat and animal-free dairy have grabbed headlines in the last five years, but the resulting products are often expensive, and some are still years away from widespread commercial availability.
However, investments, such as those made by General Mills, Tyson, Cargill, Unilever, and tech billionaire Bill Gates, have hastened the pace of development and availability of scientifically engineered food and drink.
US company Beyond Meat notes that when consumers purchase its prepared meals, which are produced in partnership with General
Mills, “the consumer is lending Mother Nature a helping hand and positively impacting climate change by conserving water, energy and land”.
Fellow plant-based meat company Impossible Foods gets more specific, defining that its plant-based burger uses 95 percent less land, 74 percent less water, and creates 87 percent less greenhouse gas emissions than the current meat supply chain.
Scientifically engineered food and drink will initially attract consumers who are worried about the environment and are taking steps to be more ecoconscious. In time, the target audience for scientifically engineered ingredients could go beyond environmentally conscious consumers and appeal to consumers who are concerned about ingredient consistency, efficacy, and purity. Technology will begin to disrupt the traditional food chain in 2018 as enterprising manufacturers aim to replace farms and factories with laboratories.