On-the-Go Gets Healthy
posted on 5 December, 2016 by Michael Green
Today’s consumers are increasingly motivated by two distinct forces: They are focused on health and wellness, and they are short on time. It’s no wonder that manufacturers are seeing a growing demand for healthy foods that are convenient, fast and easily accessible.
The intersection of health and convenience has been a long time coming, but 2017 should truly be the year of “healthy” on-the-go products, particularly pre-packaged fresh and frozen foods that can easily be incorporated into at-home meals.
Consider some of the key health trends that are motivating consumers around the globe:
As these trends emerge, consumers have found themselves with less time to devote to grocery shopping, meal prep and cooking, and even dining itself. Forty-six percent of people say grocery shopping is a chore, and most agree that convenience is now a stronger motivator than price.
It’s no wonder that more consumers are relying on the grocery store or the food manufacturer to do more of the prep work for them. Over the last several years, there has been significant growth in products such as bagged salads, pre-cut and washed vegetables, fresh pasta and sushi, pre-made sandwiches and hot meals, and box lunches. These products are now common offerings at grocery stores, coffee shops and even convenience stores around the world.
The “value-added vegetables” category alone has grown by 15 percent a year since 2011, since many consumers want to skip the process of washing, drying and cutting up their own produce. In fact, some experts expect higher-end grocery stores to begin hiring “vegetable butchers” who will cut up customers’ produce to order while they shop.
In 2017 and beyond, expect to see growing demand for foods that offer a combination of health and convenience. Around the globe, consumers want simple dining solutions that help them save time and eat healthy. For manufacturers that can combine these two key trends, healthy on-the-go products will likely be a source of success for years to come.