​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​What’s influencing consumer food choices today? 

Responsible consumption

For the food and beverage industry, by far the biggest consumer trend relates to health and environmental concerns. These were once two separate trends, but today’s consumer see them more holistically and understand their interaction.  The new attitude that is evolving –'what is good for the planet is also good for me' – presents new opportunities for food producers.

Tetra Recart carton package

​​Increasing numbers of consumers are choosing vegan, vegetarian or flexitarian diets for environmental and personal health reasons. There are more than 500 million vegans in the world. In step with this, the number of food & beverage products launched that claim to be vegetarian is also increasing rapidly.

Organic, natural and clean label concepts resonate well with consumers who are not only conscious of their personal health, but also seeking to satisfy their concerns for the health of the planet. To retain consumers’ trust and maintain brand positioning, the product and the packaging should combine to deliver a coherent message. 

Convenience reborn 

The popularity of online food shopping – not only groceries but also meal kits, prepared food and even pet food – is increasing rapidly. This trend is partly driven by continuing urbanization. Urban dwellers with busy lives are seeking ways to simplify their everyday lives. They want to save time shopping and cooking, or simply avoid having to plan meals. E-groceries and meal kits are among the new food solutions meeting this demand. 

To make online shopping easier, food products must be easy to find, identify and understand. Packaging must be designed to appeal visually to e-shoppers, taking into account the size of a typical smartphone screen. For brands to thrive in this marketplace, their products must offer distinctive benefits, expressed clearly and concisely. 

Urbanization is also helping to drive e-grocery efficiencies. The shape and weight of packaging play a role here, as the retailer’s responsibility for product quality is extended from the warehouse or /store to the consumer’s doorstep. The balance is critical: packaging must be sufficiently light for easy transportation, while sturdy enough to protect the product from being damaged by other items in the delivery.

Heritage and provenance 

Food has always been a central part of human culture and a strong carrier of cultural messages. Today, globalization is generating a powerful urge to explore other cultures and heritages. But there are other drivers​ too. Returning travellers want to re-experience the exotic flavours they enjoyed abroad, and migrant groups want to access the authentic foods of their homelands. 

For new products to succeed in this category, food producers need to align the authenticity and quality of ingredients, with the right recipes and product presentation. They may also need to fine-tune their products to suit the tastes of different geographies and demographics. Fans of Lebanese food in the US, for example, might prefer their hummus to have a slightly different taste or texture compared to consumers in the Middle East. 

*Source: Trendipedia consumer trends 2020

Did you know

55% prefer food & beverage products with clear health benefits
Source: Tetra Pak trend research 2019

54% think their health and wellbeing are strongly affected by environmental issues
Source: Tetra Pak Index 2019

71% aim to do good for the environment and realize they need to do more
Source: Tetra Pak Index 2019

The environment is the world’s top concern
Source: Tetra Pak Index 2019

25% of global chain retail is expected to be e-grocery by 2030
Source: Store Of Future 2.0, Edge by Ascential Retail Insight, 2019

46% of US adults agree plant-based proteins are better for you than animal-based proteins
Source: Lightspeed/Mintel 2018

68% prefer to buy food with no artificial colouring, no preservatives or 100% natural
Source: Kantar TNS, Food 360º 2018

94% of Gen Z believe companies should help address social and environmental issues
Source: Cone Gen Z study 2017

Meet the trends with Tetra Recart

  • 81% lower carbon emissions over the lifetime of the package, compared to tin cans and glass jars.*
  • Available in different sizes to suit your consumers’ needs
  • Can be reclosed and stored in the fridge after opening
  • Compact and pallet-efficient
  • Stable, yet lightweight
  • Does not damage other goods in home deliveries
  • Recyclable

∗ Source: Life Cycle Assessment of food packaging, Europe 2017.