2018 Trends in Fitness and Wellness
Consumer trends are calling for more nutritious food and drink options. This shift has spurred consumer spending, with net sales for natural and organic food, as well as supplements and personal care products, reaching more than $79 billion in 2017, according to Whole Foods Magazine, citing research from Retail Insights.
With strong demand for cleaner, high quality ingredients, transparency and innovation are the name of the game for food retailers and restaurants in 2018.
How Are Consumers Driving Trends?
Most consumers report that they aspire to eat more cleanly – 68 percent agreed they’d be willing to pay more for food and beverages that avoid undesirable ingredients, according to a Nielsen report. Consumers describe their preferred food as fresh, natural and minimally processed.
Leading this demand is the younger generations, millennials (between the ages of 21 and 34) and Generation Z (younger than 20). So, not only are younger consumers more interested in nutritious food, they are willing to pay more for it.
The meaning of “nutritious” can vary widely. Most often, self-proclaimed health-conscious eaters gravitate toward better-for-you options. Some may follow gluten-free or vegan diets.
Meanwhile, food allergies are on the rise for adults and children, and these dietary restrictions and preferences require transparency from food providers.
How is the Food Industry Adapting?
A growing number of restaurants have responded by listing calorie counts and ingredients. However, in May 2018, businesses with 20 locations or more will be legally required to disclose calorie information.
Smoothie King put a name to its food transparency objectives with the Cleaner Blending initiative by trading high fructose corn syrup and trans fats for more whole fruits and vegetables and a stevia-based sweetener option. This gives guests more options to customize their smoothies and make choices that align with their lifestyles and goals.
The Intersection of Nutrition and Convenience
Consumers expect convenience in every aspect of their daily lives, including their food choices. On-the-go options like smoothies help meet this demand. For example, with meal replacement smoothies available, getting a nutritious lunch may only require a trip to the drive-thru.
Nutritious food options that serve specific purposes for consumers are expected to carry momentum throughout 2018. Consumers are more aware of what they’re putting into their bodies from a nutritional standpoint, and they expect menu items to be transparent so they can make the right choices for their lifestyles.
Learn more about current trends in fitness and wellness and how Smoothie King is meeting the demand by checking out our infographic below: