Every week brings new headlines about a national foodservice brand pledging to reduce or remove food additives from their menu or products. Consumer demand is driving these changes, and the experts at Technomic's Consumer4Sight research group have timely data detailing why consumers want to know more about the food they eat, and what exactly they want to know.
Drawn from exclusive Consumer Trend Report data and distilled into a 3.5-minute video, Technomic's " Consumer Connect 2015: Attitudes Toward Additives" delves into the decision drivers, preferences and needstates that create demand for clean, additive-free food and transparent sourcing.
"Today's consumers want wholesome, nutritious foods they can feel good about eating, and that increasingly translates into demand for natural and additive-free ingredients. More than half of consumers tell us they want greater menu transparency, and more restaurant chains are moving in that direction," says Kelly Weikel, director of consumer insights at Technomic. "These are big industry shifts. The challenge to operators is making the right decisions that will resonate with their consumers and be a good long-term fit for the brand. Our industry research can help identify which food labels garner the most consumer attention and how to leverage food concerns into better sourcing decisions."
Some findings detailed in Technomic's "Consumer Connect 2015: Attitudes Toward Additives" video:
Health: More than 60 percent of consumers say natural meat is healthier, and 43 percent choose additive-free food and beverage because of better health. More specific terms have an even greater impact on consumers' choices: 78 percent see "no artificial sweeteners" as healthier, and 73 percent say that antibiotic-free food or beverages are healthier.
Taste: 30 percent of consumers say GMO-free foods and beverages are tastier, and 21 percent think that additive-free means better taste.
Price: 31-35 percent of consumers would pay more for GMO-free proteins, and 33-42 percent of consumers would pay more for antibiotic-free proteins