On the Street - Almond Board of California Reports on Food Industry Attitudes

When compared ounce-for-ounce with other nuts, 100g of almonds have one of the highest contents of protein (6g), fiber (3g), calcium (75mg), vitamin E (7.5mg), riboflavin (0.3mg) and niacin (1mg). Also, the skins of almonds contain levels of antioxidants called flavonoids that are similar to many fruits and vegetables. Interestingly, however, foodservice and consumer packaged goods  (CPG) professionals say taste, consumer demand, texture and crunch are still the top influencers on their choice to use nuts in dishes/products. The Almond Board of California’s “Volume Driver Attitudes, Awareness & Usage Study” (conducted in 2007 by Sterling-Rice Group), surveyed 212 foodservice and  CPG food professionals and found many interesting facts about almonds. Specifically, survey respondents said taste (81%), visual appeal (65%), texture (59%) and consumer demand (57%) are extremely important attributes that drive the inclusion of almonds in new products or menu items. When asked what their favorite nut is (to work with) and why it is their favorite, respondents said almonds are liked because of their versatility, health benefits and consumer demand. On the consumer side of the equation, Americans continue to have favorable perceptions of products containing almonds. Moreover, the number of almond-containing new products launched in North America grew 30% from 2006-2007, far outpacing the slight increase in nut products in general and the decrease in food products overall. Almond Board of California, 209-549-8262, www.almondsarein.com

From the March 30, 2009, Prepared Foods E-dition