Going ‘Back to the Foodture’

By 10th November 2016 No Comments

This week, Publicasity’s Food & Drink Associate Director, Babs Normile, partnered with Emma Clifford from insights specialists Mintel and Rob Brown from The Grocer magazine, to host a special food trends event for the great and the good in the FMCG industry including Premier Foods, Birdseye, BOL, Propercorn, Oppo, Mars and Waitrose to name only a few.

Rob and Emma looked at the health and wellness trends currently affecting the market, some interesting reactions and strategies from brands and some future gazing into which trends are here to stay, the areas yet to be exploited by manufacturers and the trends on the horizon which the industry should be aware of.

First to note is that the definition of ‘healthy’ has had a makeover in recent years and concepts of healthy eating have been turned on their head.

Gone are the days of eating cereal or toast (too high in carbs and no protein) with skimmed milk (not as good for you as the full fat alternative) or margarine (full of additives), all washed down with fruit juice (full of sugar) for breakfast.  Now, 40% of us think it’s important to get plenty of protein for breakfast, which is why Britain is eating 18% more eggs in the morning than it was two years ago…

‘Fat is the next frontier’ according to Rob’s research, and a point in case that what was once seen unhealthy is now often viewed as the opposite, and vice versa.  With the right strategy, brands can adapt to the huge changes that are going on within the concept of ‘healthy eating’ and there are a number of products and brands from peanut butter to Karma Cola to Dave’s Killer Bread which have managed to turn what would’ve once been seen as a vice, into a virtue.

‘Positive nutrition’ and ‘empowerment’ were the buzzwords from Emma at Mintel: boosting our health through getting as much nutritional goodness into our bodies as possible. It encompasses a number of elements, including high-protein and superfoods, but ultimately, because as its name suggests, it’s a positive and proactive approach to eating which generates a feel-good and motivational vibe.

And, despite the rising levels of innovation tapping into the interest in positive nutrition, there remains huge potential for further growth and a myriad opportunities in categories which currently do not benefit from positive health credentials including cakes, confectionery and ready meals.

According to Mintel, maca, turmeric, seaweeds and sprouting grains, seeds and beans are set to be big trends in food in 2017, whilst the protein bubble is likely to burst soon.

In a market where we’re redefining the word ‘healthy’, it is also changing the way we talk about, and market, food products.  The idea of positive nutrition has meant we’re injecting feel good language and empowerment into our communication, and more established food brands need to ‘Go Back to the Foodture’ to combine their heritage with innovation to keep up with younger brands coming onto the market.

Here are our top five tips for FMCG brand PR in 2017 but if you want to know more about how your brand can adapt its comms strategy within the ever-changing food landscape, or if you would like a full summary of the findings then please email Babs at bnormile@publicasity.co.uk