Vegan Solutions to Serve the Global Rise of Plant-Based Eating
While diets limiting meat, dairy and eggs used to be viewed as fads, many of today’s consumers, especially millennials and younger generations, are shifting toward plant-based eating. The shift toward the plant-based diet is driven largely by younger consumers, however, their effect is raising awareness across the entire demographic spectrum.
As a result of the global rise of plant-based eating, there has been a significant and growing need for vegan foods during the last few years. While there are many reasons consumers are turning to veganism, the fact remains that the new trend is shaping and leading innovation in the food industry worldwide.
The number of people identifying as vegans increased by 600% in the US over the last three years and by 350% in the United Kingdom compared to a decade ago.
South Africa is 1st in Africa and 23rd worldwide for veganism popularity according to Google Trends data. Similarly, according to recent Mintel reports on plant-based protein in the US, 38% of American consumers are trying to add more plant-based proteins into their diets while 21% of American consumers already identify as being “flexitarians,” being on a plant-based diet with occasional meat inclusion. One-third of regular meat eaters and more than half of occasional meat eaters said that they were trying to add more plant-based food into their diet, which provides infinite opportunities for vegan products that don’t necessarily target only vegan people.
However, regardless of any type of diet or drivers of a certain lifestyle, consumers aren’t willing to sacrifice taste. In fact, according to a Mintel report on flavors in Europe, taste is the driving factor when it comes to making decisions in the grocery aisle, followed by health-centric attributes. Therefore, the taste of vegan products plays a crucial role in targeting people with different dietary lifestyle. Although vegans are a minority among the global population, multinational brands, especially retailers, are developing vegan-friendly options to cater not only to vegans but also to a wider eco-conscious or health-aware consumer base.
Companies put more focus not only on the production of plant-based foods that are appealing to the taste and nutritional demands of meat eaters, but also on the improvement of taste, texture and nutritional profile of vegan products as well. Since consumers have become more skeptical about food and drink ingredients and their sourcing, companies are looking for new ways to incorporate flavor components from natural origins.
Consumers seeking plant-based options are more likely to look for non-GMO products that are high in protein and have no artificial ingredients.
At Sensient, we believe that everyone should be able to enjoy delicious flavors that fit their needs—and that’s exactly what we’re creating here every day. In order to constantly exceed expectations, each flavor is made-to-order under exacting specifications. To satisfy the growing need for different free-from products, vegan flavors are also available for other dietary lifestyles such as Certified Organic, Organic Compliant, Kosher, Gluten Free, Non-GMO, or Allergen Free flavors.
For more information on how Sensient can help you create authentic vegan and other flavors that offer sustainability click here.