Progressive Grocer - September 2017 - 98
People are so
what's in it
and what they
in their body
food system that knowing where a product
is coming from, what's in it and what they
are putting in their body gives them some
piece of mind," she says. "Ultimately, it is
about feeling good about the decisions they
are making and being confident that the food
they are spending their money on is safe."
Food fear is a real issue today, notes Mindy
Hermann, a New York-based registered dietitian
nutritionist. She adds that social media is playing
a key role in much of the fearmongering happening today and driving consumers' desire to learn as
much as they can about the food they eat. "People
want to know if products have been exposed to or
contain things such as trans fats, hormones, antibiotics, pesticides or added sugar, so they can make
educated decisions about what they are buying,"
Hermann says. "The more they know about where
the steak came from, or the salmon, or the milk, or
their produce, the more assured they are that the
food they're buying is fresh and safe."
When he looks at the trends driving dairy and
meat, David Browne, a Sacramento, Calif.-based market research and retail consultant specializing in the
natural and specialty food industry, finds that aspects
Our organic mushrooms
are certifiably delicious.
such as grass-fed, humanely raised and animal welfare
are leading the charge. Supporting his assertion are
data from the most recent "Power of Meat" survey
from Food Marketing Institute and the North American Meat Institute, which found that consumers' desire for transparency in meat and poultry production is
behind the double-digit growth in grass-fed, organic,
and hormone- and antibiotic-free meats. "What this
tells me is that clean, simple foods are beginning to
show up on consumers' radar," Browne says.
While the free-of movement has been brewing in
the natural channel for a while, Browne notes that
it's just starting to make its way into the mainstream.
"Planned or not, this is playing right into the hands
of Millennials, who want this transparency and thrive on the backstory
of who this farmer is and how was
this turkey or pig raised," he says,
adding that the free-of concept may
be sustainable in the natural channel,
but translating it to grocery - where
volume demands are much higher -
could pose a challenge.
Regarding current trends, Browne
says that non-GMO and even glutenfree are still experiencing what he
would call a growth phase, and predicts that it will be several years before
consumer interest maxes out. "It may
be nearing maturity, but we are still a
long way off from seeing either of these
trend downward," he observes.
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We grow our mushrooms in a fully organic environment and they are
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Equal Opportunity Employer
| Progressive Grocer | Ahead of What's Next | September 2017
Shout it Out Loud
For free-of to take off, products will
need to be aggressively merchandised
on-pack and in-store. "I've seen this
happen in other departments, such as
bakery, where retailers really struggle
with how to identify and properly
merchandise certain so-called 'healthful products' in a way that makes
them clearly distinguishable from the
other offerings," Browne says. The
other roadblock to growth, he adds,
may be store personnel: "Consumers
are willing to pay more for products