FrieslandCampina Ingredients Food & Beverages identifies “Conscious Indulgence” as the key global market trend in its 2020-2021 Trend Report. Now that the dust is settling from the first wave of the global pandemic and the contours of a new world are starting to take shape, the company shares its vision on where the industry is heading in a new normal.

Insights from the latest Trend Report not only give food and drink manufacturers an understanding of consumers’ needs in these turbulent times, but also allow them to get ahead of the curve and competition. Turn-key recipe suggestions round up the report’s content and will adequately prepare them for tomorrow’s menu amidst a new normal.

The Trend Report shines a light on both macro and micro developments in local markets across the world. Inspiring recipes based on the findings bring key observations to life that can facilitate product innovation to keep up with rapidly changing consumer needs. The trends are an accumulation of market insights from FrieslandCampina Ingredients’ own experts, combined with additional owned and bought market studies and further complemented with big data analysis of consumers’ online behavior.

The Trends

The 2020-2021 Trend Report presents three macro trends and a further deep dive in the form of nine micro trends to give the reader a broader understanding of the key developments in the global food and beverage industry. Although they may appear differently, subject to regional differences, the three identifiable global trends are: “Conscious Indulgence,” “Experience Beyond The Imagined” and “Shaping A Better World.”

Conscious Indulgence
Consumer interest in a diet with wellness benefits was already on the rise before the onset of COVID-19. But the pandemic forced consumers to think more about their lifestyles. That also aroused the desire to better understand ingredients and enjoy delicious beverages and foods that can incidentally protect and promote good health.

Some of the micro trends observed are: taking out (perceived) unhealthy ingredients, added goodness and an increased interest in plant-based alternatives, revealing a deeper dive into the conscious indulgence macro trend. 

Examples bringing these trends to life are brown sugar milk tea partially sweetened with natural stevia so lower in sugar or smoothie pancakes containing high-quality protein plus all the goodness from consumers’ favorite smoothies.

Experience Beyond the Imagined
Consumers are keen to pursue unforgettable experiences and adopt new definitions of indulgence. Today, it's all about a total and immersive experience that tickles all the senses. They are finding more time to experiment in-home, get more creative and discover new flavor combinations.

Cookie cheesecake cupcakes, double brewed milk tea frappé with salted chips milk foam, extreme milk tea tasting sliders and excessively fluffy waffles are now seeing the light in the homes of consumers as they create their own feel-good moments to cherish. Out of home is also joining the party, by bringing unforgettable experiences to consumers’ doorstep through DIY kits or online baking classes. 

Micro trends now emerging across continents include new takes on texture, re-inventing in-home indulgence and extreme experiences.

Shaping a Better World
Sustainability came naturally during the pandemic for consumers. People cooked creatively with whatever was left in their cupboards and were conscious about waste. Prior to COVID-19 as well, consumers wanted ingredients that were ethically sourced, came from closer to home and boasted green credentials. 

Nowadays consumers are enjoying a brunch veggie loaf or a cappuccino in an edible cup, and feel that there are opportunities to make lasting positive changes and shape a better world. The findings in the report show that seasonal and local resources will become key alongside recognizable ingredients and transparent sourcing. 

The micro trends emphasize these findings – with back to our roots, no waste, great taste serving as important drivers.

Read all about the macro trends and take a deep dive into the micro trends by downloading the full report.

 “Increased interest in food and drinks that promote consumer health, bring new experiences to life and shape a more sustainable world will define the new normal. The challenge for manufacturers is to cater to these consumer needs without compromising on delicious taste and the sense of indulgence,” says Suzanne van den Eshof, global marketing director at FrieslandCampina Ingredients Food & Beverages. 

She adds, “Brands and companies that are able to jump quickly on these trends, together with their ingredient supplier supporting them via recipe innovation and sustainable products, will be the ones that come out on top after these difficult times. Close collaboration will increase the speed to market, while at the same time leveraging opportunities to get creative with and for the consumer.”


The current situation made everyone think about their lives, the planet and our way of living, with people being compelled to be innovative. Conscientious consumers are keen to enjoy a local product towards reducing their impact on the planet and natural environment. Waste reduction is high on the agenda with consumers finding ways to cut down their carbon footprint. 

“Our listening program shows that consumers see positive developments they want to hang on to which brings opportunities to make lasting and impactful changes to shape a better world. We feel the same way and have continued our efforts towards sustainability in order to support our partners and deliver ingredients that consumers can enjoy with a clear conscience,” says van den Eshof.

The data

The trend report is based on FrieslandCampina Ingredients’ intelligence services such as market studies and global research, as well as the expertise of in-house industry experts and its own research. The focus on the report is on relevant trends in the coffee, (milk) tea, cakes, bakery and pastry, desserts and ice cream industries, in order to serve FrieslandCampina Ingredients Food & Beverage’s partners in the best way possible. 

“By presenting our new annual Trend Report, we want to help our partners navigate these difficult times and prepare for tomorrow,” adds van den Eshof. “Our findings show the rapidly changing consumer needs, enabling our partners to anticipate – both now and in the near future. We’re committed and passionate about bringing innovation to our customers and creating more moments of feeling good.” 

About FrieslandCampina Ingredients 

FrieslandCampina Ingredients reported combined sales of €1.8 billion in FY19 and employs an international group of 3,250 employees. The new segments Early Life Nutrition, Adult Nutrition, Food & Beverages and Animal Nutrition operate worldwide, with regional sales offices in The Netherlands, USA, Singapore, China and Brazil, under one unified brand identity and tagline, “The Inside Matters.”  

At its core, the company consists of passionate ingredient specialists focused on adding goodness to the foods, beverages and businesses that nourish the world. The addition of clear segmentation strengthens the company’s position as an innovative partner and global player in healthy and functional ingredients and solutions. For additional information, please visit:

FrieslandCampina Ingredients is part of Royal FrieslandCampina N.V. The dairy company daily provides millions of consumers throughout the world with dairy products containing the valuable nutrients from milk. The annual turnover amounted to 11.3 billion euro in 2019. FrieslandCampina has locations in 36 countries and employs about 24,000 employees. The Central Office is located in the Netherlands.