Innova Market Insights found that plant-based product claims skyrocketed at a compound annual growth rate of 62 percent worldwide from 2013 through 2017, with increases occurring in such areas as plant proteins, active botanicals, sweeteners, herbs and seasonings, and food coloring. Dairy alternative category still dominates it, global sales of dairy alternative drinks are set to reach U.S. $16.3 billion in 2018 and accounted for 8 percent of global dairy launches in 2017, up from 7 percent from 2016.
A shift toward plant-based diets, along with interest in vegan, vegetarian and flexitarian lifestyles and concerns regarding animal welfare, have combined to boost interest in such products, and new product development has seen an 11 percent compound annual growth rate in 2013-17 period. Innova’s research showed that 40% of U.S. consumers upped their consumption of meat substitutes/alternatives in 2017.
Lightbulb Moment: It is not only plant-based foods that are gaining attention but the very claim that a product is plant-based is now a virtue. The plant-based trend is one of the newest Pandora’s Boxes to open, it is virtually unstoppable and has few or no enemies. It is not limited to proteins either – it extends itself to florals, fruits, oil, dairy, grains, and beans in their simplest and loveliest forms. They excel in technology, beating out animal protein due to their versatility as they show up as fiber, flour, flavors, and nutritional supplements. Animal proteins should not despair as they excel in qualities that plant-based food cannot compete with – Vitamin B12 – just to name one.