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What's Cooking? Trends in Food (February 2012)

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What's Cooking? Trends in Food (February 2012)

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This report surveys what’s changing when it comes to how we find, cook and eat food, how we think about what we eat and how brands are marketing food. It doesn’t, however, attempt to round up everything of note in the wide world of food and beverage. Rather, it focuses on eight
of the relevant macro trends we’ve highlighted in the past few years, plus three overarching trends affecting the food category: the influence of technology, health and wellness, and foodie culture. Within these trends, we spotlight some of the things to watch we’ve been tracking.

This report surveys what’s changing when it comes to how we find, cook and eat food, how we think about what we eat and how brands are marketing food. It doesn’t, however, attempt to round up everything of note in the wide world of food and beverage. Rather, it focuses on eight
of the relevant macro trends we’ve highlighted in the past few years, plus three overarching trends affecting the food category: the influence of technology, health and wellness, and foodie culture. Within these trends, we spotlight some of the things to watch we’ve been tracking.

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What's Cooking? Trends in Food (February 2012)

  1. Image credit: avlxyz
  2. • Introduction • Methodology • Trends in Food • Appendix – Influencer/Expert Q&As – Additional Charts A note to readers: To make the report easy to navigate, we’ve added hyperlinks to this page and the Trends in Food pages, so you can jump immediately to the items that most interest you (or, alternatively, you can read the material straight through). 2
  3. What and how we eat today might look quite baffling to anyone who’s missed the past decade: Gluten-free treats from a food truck? “Foodspotting” an order of locally sourced, heirloom vegetables? Yet at the same time we’re reconnecting with our past, looking to eat more communally and celebrating regional food traditions, even digging up antique recipes. This report surveys what’s changing when it comes to how we find, cook and eat food, how we think about what we eat and how brands are marketing food. It doesn’t, however, attempt to round up everything of note in the wide world of food and beverage. Rather, it focuses on eight of the relevant macro trends we’ve highlighted in the past few years, plus three overarching trends affecting the food category: the influence of technology, health and wellness, and foodie culture. Within these trends, we spotlight some of the things to watch we’ve been tracking. 3
  4. JWT’s “What’s Cooking? Trends in Food” is the result of quantitative, qualitative and desk research conducted by JWTIntelligence throughout the year. Specifically for this report, we conducted quantitative surveys in the U.S. and the U.K. using SONAR™, JWT’s proprietary online tool. We surveyed 1,270 adults aged 21-plus (768 Americans and 502 Britons) from Jan. 19-24; data are weighted by age, gender and income. We also received input from JWT planners across several markets—including the U.K., Spain, Venezuela, Argentina, Poland, South Africa and Thailand—and interviewed experts and influencers in food and beverage.* SUDHIR KANDULA, ELISE KORNACK, MICHAEL LEE, STEPHANIE STIAVETTI, America’s Next co-founder, Take Root; founder, Studiofeast food blogger Great Restaurant Chopped contestant (TheCulinaryLife.com) contestant and writer *To read our Q&As with these influencers/experts, see Appendix. 4
  5. 1. FOODIE CULTURE 2. FOOD AS THE 3. THE DEVIL WEARS 4. HEALTH AND 5. MAXIMUM 6. LIVE A LITTLE • Food as Theater NEW ECO-ISSUE PACKAGING WELLNESS DISCLOSURE • The Lipstick Index • Food Fairs • Spiking Food • BYO Containers • Fooducate • Labeling Effect Prices • Reusable • Nutrition Scores Legalities • A Little Serving • Food by Subscription • From Staples to Packaging • Fat Taxes • Tell-All Vending of Sin Luxuries • Hydration Stations Machines • Fearless Eating • Healthy and Fresh • Greener Supply Vending Machines • Going Behind • Kitchen- Chains the Scenes Restaurants • Gluten-Free • Greening • Visual Fluency • Roots Revival Restaurants • Hold the Salt • Antique Eats • Carbon Footprint • Inhaling • Moonshine Labeling • Smart Lunchrooms • Heirloom • Curbing Food • Organic Fast Food Everything Waste • What’s New in • New Nordic • Veering Vegan/ Functional Foods Cuisine Vegetarian - Food, Ph.D. • Beer Sommeliers • Insects as Protein - Artery-Cleaning • Beer Cocktails • Artificial Meat Foods • High-End • Sustainable - Mushrooms Techniques Palm Oil - Matcha for Amateurs • Rooftop Farming - Slow Beverages - Greek Yogurt - Spices - Juicing Up Coconut - Nutricosmetics 5
  6. 7. NAVIGATING THE 8. GETTING 9. ALL THE WORLD’S 10. SCREENED 11. RETAIL AS THE NEW NORMAL “SMARTER” A GAME INTERACTIONS THIRD SPACE • Smaller SKUs • Smarter • Apps That Gamify • Screened Dining • Food Halls Cookbooks Eating • Kiosks/Vending • Communal Eating • Smarter Recipes • Gamifying the Machines • Shops That • Smarter Kitchens Business Model • Interactive Out- Do More • Smarter Ordering of-Home Ads • Smarter Shopping • Smarter Packaging 6
  7. • Food as Theater • Moonshine Yesterday’s gourmand has multiplied into factions of foodies all with • Food Fairs • Heirloom Everything various passions centered around cooking, dining out and eating, • Food by Subscription • New Nordic Cuisine eating, eating. A foodie backlash may be under way, but food remains • Fearless Eating • Beer Sommeliers more photographed, analyzed, critiqued and generally obsessed over • Kitchen- • Beer Cocktails than it’s ever been. Restaurants • High-end Techniques • Roots Revival for Amateurs • Antique Eats • What It Means for Brands Image credit: gwen 7
  8. Foodies take their dining seriously, but that doesn’t mean • Le Fooding, a French gastronomic group, puts on it can’t be fun: We’ve seen the rise of theatrical events conceptual events like last year’s “Exquisite Corpse”: that turn eating into a high-concept production filled with Borrowing from the surrealist idea, the 48-hour New York surprise and whimsy. event involved 12 successive dinners in which each high- profile chef was required to use some ingredients from • Last year several New York dining clubs banded together to the previous chef’s meal. serve an upscale six-course lunch aboard the L subway train as it traveled from Manhattan through Brooklyn. Invitees • The group Chicago Foodies has started a “Unique Dinner didn’t know what they were in for—they met at a given Series” to challenge chefs’ creativity. The inaugural intersection and then were guided underground. The event event, in January, was titled “16 Courses of Black.” wasn’t officially sanctioned, only adding to its allure. • At Dans le Noir, a restaurant with branches in several • “Dîner en Blanc,” an idea that began in Paris, is akin to European cities and New York, diners eat in the dark, only a “refined flash-mob feast,” as The New York Times put finding out what they ate after the meal. it: Several hundred to a few thousand people, all wearing white, dine in a public spot, bringing their own food and tables. The location is secret until the day it takes place. More than a thousand attendees participated in the first New York Dîner en Blanc last year. Image credit: Dîner en Blanc 8
  9. Along with foodie-ism, a couple of trends—green markets, mobile vendors (food trucks), affinity for local purveyors and the DIY movement—are helping to propel local food fairs: markets comprising vendors that each focus on a few specialty dishes or goods. For instance, New York foodies flock to Smorgasburg, on the waterfront in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, which hosts about 75 vendors once a week during non-winter months. “Food raves,” markets that don’t require vendors to have permits and insurance, are also popping up. In San Francisco, bands play at the periodic SF Underground Market, which runs from late morning till the wee hours and requires “membership” for entry. Similar markets big and small operate in other cities, from The Secret Fork in L.A. to the DC Grey Market in Washington. Image credits: Smorgasburg; DC Grey Market 9
  10. Old-fashioned monthly subscription services are on the • Craft Coffee sends three varieties of coffee per month, upswing, but rather than the typical wine or fruit of the all from small roasters around America. month, they offer curated selections for foodies who like the idea of receiving surprise packages and staying attuned • Love With Food uses the “buy one, donate one” model, to what’s new and notable. donating a meal to a food bank for every box of “curated gourmet bites” purchased. • Gilt Taste’s selections—ranging from whimsical whoopie pies to game meats—are curated by former Gourmet editor and author Ruth Reichl. • Foodzie calls itself a “Tasting Club” and selects foods from various sources, many of them small-batch producers. Subscribers choose among three boxes each month. • Blissmobox, which offers several monthly options of organic and eco-friendly products, recently added BREAKbox, an assortment of healthy, high-quality snacks designed to stock the office kitchenette. Image credits: Craft Coffee; Gilt Taste; Love With Food 10
  11. Unconventional ingredients, meats and dishes are While such items have been filtering onto restaurant plates popping up on menus of the more trendy variety, often for some time, today’s foodies are ordering them with an in conjunction with the nose-to-tail trend. In the U.S., eagerness that rivals Andrew Zimmern’s (the intrepid host foods not typically found in the American diet—such as of TV’s Bizarre Foods). These forays outside established cockscombs, alligator and lamb’s brain—are finding favor. comfort zones help people stand out in the social media The hot L.A. restaurant Animal is filled with options mom stream and earn some cred among fellow foodies. And likely never cooked, including pig ears and sweetbreads. after years of broadening their palates, foodies have In the U.K., where such foods have also been shied away nowhere to go but the bizarre. from, Londoners are abuzz about Brawn, which serves pigs’ trotters and head of veal. Insects are another “fear factor” ingredient gaining traction: A Mexican food cart in San Francisco, Don Bugito, focuses on exotic dishes like ice cream topped with caramelized mealworms. Last year for Cinco de Mayo, Dos Equis’ “Feast of the Brave” promotion in New York involved a food truck giving away free cricket, ostrich or veal brain tacos. Image credit: brianplattcreative.com 11
  12. The wall between the kitchen and the restaurant dining room has been disappearing—allowing curious customers to watch the cooks in action—and now some restaurants are conflating the two altogether. For example, The Kitchen Restaurant in Sacramento, Calif., offers a six-course meal, with diners encouraged to make themselves at home. Chef’s Table at Brooklyn Fare, in Brooklyn, lets 18 guests watch the chef cook 20 or so small plate courses. The concept lets curious foodies feel like true insiders and “unwraps the process” for patrons, providing the behind-the- scenes view that consumers are increasingly interested in. Image credit: The Kitchen Restaurant 12
  13. As various international foods infiltrate markets worldwide—sushi is going mass market in Venezuela; Mexican and Argentinean restaurants are finding favor in Australia—there’s concurrently a new appreciation for national and regional foods, and cooking techniques unique to one’s heritage. In Greece, for instance, local brands are prospering and touting their Greekness, while major foreign brands are playing up Greek ingredients or “Made in Greece.” Last year, in an “Open Letter to the Chefs of Tomorrow,” members of the International Advisory Board of the Basque Culinary Center reminded peers that “Through our cooking, our ethics, and our aesthetics, we can contribute to the culture and identity of a people, a region, a country. We can also serve as an important bridge with other cultures.” With foodies seeking out more “authentic” and homemade- style foods, there’s a robust market for distinctive foods beyond the geography in question. Image credits: Amazon [1], [2], [3] 13
  14. The heritage trend is making its way to food, with chefs digging up recipes and adding ingredients from yesteryear. The hot restaurant Dinner by Heston Blumenthal in London serves bygone British dishes. In Charleston, S.C., Sean Brock relies on traditionally Southern heirloom produce and heritage meats at his restaurant Husk, earning “best new restaurant in America” honors from Bon Appétit in 2011. Some of this is for the more adventurous (e.g., Grant Achatz’s duck with blood sauce in Chicago), but in the U.K., at least, everyday consumers are preparing meats that hearken back to older eras, like pheasant, venison and wood pigeon. Image credit: dinnerbyheston.com 14
  15. White lightnin’: This all-American corn whiskey—commonly called moonshine—is going legit as legal distilleries across the U.S. churn out batches of the outlaw spirit. A Prohibition favorite, the unregulated throat-scalding liquor remained a tradition in its ancestral home, the Southeastern U.S. Now, legal moonshine is charming upscale city slickers with the authentic look of its packaging (it’s sold in glass bottles and mason jars, which highlight moonshine’s signature clear cast) and its high alcohol content (frequently up to 120 proof). The new Discovery Channel series Moonshiners, which turns the camera on Appalachian bootleggers, may give a leg up to legit cousins like Original Moonshine, Shine On Georgia Moon and Ole Smoky Tennessee Moonshine. Image credits: Ole Smoky Tennessee Moonshine; heavenhill.com 15
  16. “Artisanal” has become the overused term du jour in food; “heirloom” will follow. While it’s been around for a while, starting with tomatoes and beef, lately everything from corn to beans has been getting an “heirloom” designation, generally meaning an older variety that’s genetically distinct from commercial products. (“Heirloom” is mostly used for crops, “heritage” for livestock.) The term is becoming shorthand for quality and natural (and, frequently, higher prices). Image credit: Edsel L 16
  17. As we noted in our Things to Watch list for 2011, the foodie focus has shifted to Copenhagen with the rising fame of Noma, its chef René Redzepi and other inspired restaurants, and a modified form of this cuisine is spreading well beyond Denmark (minus unique local ingredients like elderflowers and puffin eggs). Look for more chefs to find inspiration in Redzepi’s emphasis on foraging for local plants, herbs and roots, and simple but quality ingredients. The Los Angeles restaurant Forage, for example, is—as its name implies— based around foraged ingredients. Image credit: Forage 17
  18. Beer Sommeliers: As beer garners more respect in foodie culture—perhaps a sign of the budget-minded times— there’s a growing appreciation for the ways that, like wine, different varieties can complement food. In 2010, Food & Wine magazine honored one beer expert among its seven Sommeliers of the Year. In 2011, Oxford University Press published the first edition of The Oxford Companion to Beer. Watch for more sommeliers or “Cicerone,” as the 300-plus individuals who have passed a certification program are titled. Beer Cocktails: Mixing beer and liquor may not be a first instinct for many, but it seems beer can harmonize well with various spirits, giving cocktails a new depth and complexity. The “green devil,” for example, from beer writer Stephen Beaumont, mixes the Belgian beer Duvel with absinthe and gin. A Beer Cocktails book is due out in June. Image credits: Amazon [1], [2] 18
  19. Do try this at home: High-end, high-tech kitchen techniques are increasingly filtering down to ambitious home cooks. They’re trying out sous vide, for example, an exacting method that involves vacuum-packing food and cooking it at precise temperatures, yielding juicy, intensely flavorful dishes. Upscale cookware chains including Sur La Table and Williams-Sonoma are selling sous vide appliances like vacuum food sealers and immersion circulators. As the technology utilized in cookbooks like the exhaustive 2011 tome Modernist Cuisine becomes more accessible, more at-home homogenizers and centrifuges will work their way into retail lineups. Image credit: modernistcuisine.com 19
  20. • The tech-savvy foodie is far more connected to like-minded eaters than the food aficionado of old. While the explosion in social media sharing came after the rise of foodie culture, today it’s a key driver: Half the satisfaction is in photographing fabulous dishes and posting to Facebook or networks like Foodspotting, in turn stirring FOMO (fear of missing out) and copycat behavior. • The heightened interest in local and so-called artisanal foods is also helping to fuel foodie-ism. And edibles that feel “authentic” are of particular interest, whether the food is high- or low-end, as a Packaged Facts report on U.S. foodies notes. Since these consumers tend to eschew mainstream brands and habits, the report warns they can be an elusive target for marketers—but adds they can also be uniquely interested in the product. • Some U.S. restaurant chains are touting their culinary bona fides while moving away from themes of value, convenience, service or speed—e.g., Burger King dropped its King mascot and value focus in favor of ads that play up ingredients—as Nation’s Restaurant News recently reported. As more mass marketers latch onto buzz phrases like “artisanal” and position themselves as worthy of foodie patronage, these consumers will grow increasingly wary of “foodie-washing.” 20
  21. • Spiking Food Prices • Veering Vegan/ Vegetarian • From Staples to The environmental impact of our food choices will become a Luxuries • Insects as Protein more prominent concern as stakeholders—brands, governments • Greener Supply • Artificial Meat Chains and activist organizations—drive awareness around the issue and • Sustainable rethink what kind of food is sold and how it’s made. As more regions • Greening Palm Oil Restaurants grapple with food shortages and/or spiking costs, smarter practices • Rooftop Farming • Carbon Footprint • What It Means around food will join the stable of green “best practices.” Labeling for Brands • Curbing Food Waste Image credit: see.wolf 21
  22. As extreme weather wreaks havoc on crop yields, watch for already-high food prices to spike further thanks to droughts, flooding and other irregularities brought on by climate change. For example, Thailand, the world’s biggest rice producer, is expecting smaller yields thanks in part to its disastrous floods. In the U.S., drought in Texas thinned cattle herds, which played a part in pushing up beef prices by almost 10% year-over-year as of November. Seafood prices rose almost 6% following the Japanese earthquake and tsunami. Image credit: toastforbrekkie 22
  23. Beef, chocolate and other beloved staples could become Climate change is the culprit when it comes to coffee: the caviar of the future, thanks to factors ranging from Last year Starbucks said it sees “a potentially significant new emerging market demand, climate change and the risk” to its Arabica bean supply, looking 10 years ahead strains of a more populous planet. and beyond. The company is working with suppliers to combat issues like frequent hurricanes and soil erosion. A bigger appetite for chocolate in China, coupled with political and agricultural issues in Ivory Coast, are Some optimists, however, argue that leaps in agricultural prompting warnings about the coca supply. Mars Chocolate science and other advances (e.g., artificial meat) will said last year that the industry faces a 1 million-ton ensure there’s enough food to feed the planet. cocoa shortfall by 2020 “unless more is done to promote sustainability,” pledging to use only certified sustainable chocolate by that time. Meanwhile, some researchers say the Ivory Coast and Ghana could simply be too hot to grow cocoa by 2050. Beef could become “the caviar of the future,” an official with the U.N.’s Food and Agriculture Organization has said. Consumption is forecast to double by 2050 even as the resources needed for beef’s production dwindle. More immediately, U.S. beef prices are spiking—up 10% last year and likely to keep rising this year—thanks to a drought that shrunk the U.S. cattle herd and strong export demand. Image credit: cincomomo 23
  24. Food marketers are working to green up their agricultural supply chains in various ways. For example: McDonald’s: The company established its Sustainable Land Management Commitment in 2009. The stated goal is to ensure that raw materials “originate from legal and sustainably managed land resources.” In tandem with the World Wildlife Fund, McDonald’s conducted an audit to determine where it could make the most substantial impact. In 2011, the company focused on its beef, poultry, coffee, palm oil and wood fiber sourcing, and committed to sustainable palm oil sourcing by 2015. Chipotle: This fast-casual Mexican food chain, based around the proposition “food with integrity,” touts books like Michael Pollan’s In Defense of Food as “recommended reading” on its website and lightheartedly warns “It’s all fun and games until someone wrecks a planet.” Founded in 2011, its Cultivate Foundation funds sustainable farming initiatives, among other things. An animated film outlining Chipotle’s mission shows a farmer’s evolution from free range to industrial farming and then back to the older, ecologically friendlier means of production. Image credit: Chipotle 24
  25. Some restaurants are seeking to become more sustainable • The Vancouver-based Green Table Network, which has by revamping their practices in various ways, and ratings certified more than 100 operations since it was founded in systems point the way for concerned patrons. 2007, is a nonprofit that helps food industry professionals “get started down a greener path.” • Launched in 2010, the U.K.’s Sustainable Restaurant Association helps restaurants to be more sustainable, which can mean being more socially responsible (community engagement, etc.) or more green (e.g., saving water and energy), or improving sourcing (supporting “environmentally positive farming,” etc.). Restaurants are rated according to a three- star system. • In the U.S., the Green Restaurant Association has been around for more than two decades. It rates restaurants according to criteria including water efficiency, energy consumption, waste reduction and recycling, and use of sustainable food. Garden Fresh, which operates Souplantation and Sweet Tomatoes restaurants, became the largest chain to get certified last September. Image credits: SRA; Souplantation 25
  26. In line with our trend Maximum Disclosure, the past few • In the U.K., the Carbon Trust provides a Carbon years have seen some efforts to tally the carbon emissions Reduction Label for certified products—those that prove associated with food products. It’s a complex endeavor, they are working to reduce their footprint—but will however, and Tesco recently said it would halt an ambitious soon have to cope with a loss of government funding. five-year-old drive to label all its store-brand products, Participating companies include Kingsmill breads and partly because several months were required to determine a Walkers potato chips. footprint for a single product. Other labeling efforts include: • France’s Groupe Casino is labeling its store-brand • Realizing several years ago that the products according to a Carbon Index it developed. bulk of its carbon footprint comes from beef consumption, Swedish • Some companies are making up their own label, like fast food chain Max Burgers Finland’s Fazer, which uses a “Carbon Flower.” started labeling menus with So far it’s only featured on packaging for carbon footprint information (and what Fazer describes as “one concurrently pushing alternatives, of Finland’s most popular like chicken and salad options). breads.” • South Korea’s environment ministry is sponsoring a carbon labeling system that includes some food products, which carry a logo showing the item’s footprint. Japan has a similar system, and Thailand is testing one. Image credits: Max Burgers; Fazer 26
  27. As much as a third of the food produced worldwide, • U.K. retailers such as or 1.3 billion metric tons, is lost or wasted each Sainsbury’s and Marks & year, according to the U.N.’s Food and Agriculture Spencer are partnering with Organization. Not only is this a waste of valuable land, Love Food Hate Waste, which water and energy resources, but most of the discarded aims to cut waste by helping food actually contributes to global warming because it people find recipes for ends up in landfills, where it creates methane. Among the leftovers and providing tips governments and others trying to change this: for preventing waste. • Unilever’s Food Solutions unit recently launched United Against Waste, a We cannot limit sustainability to food campaign to drive waste reduction in production, we need to also look at the food-service industry. our food consumption. Waste less.” • In the U.K., food packaging will no longer feature a “sell —JOSÉ GRAZIANO DA SILVA, director general of the U.N.’s Food and Agriculture by” date (only “use by” or “best before”), a bid to reduce Organization, Bloomberg, Jan. 23, 2012 the £12 billion worth of food thrown out each year. • The Too Good to Waste campaign from the U.K.-based Sustainable Restaurant Association is encouraging more British restaurant diners to take home leftovers. Image credits: unileverfoodsolutions.us; lovefoodhatewaste.com 27
  28. • Cook a huge meal and unable to eat it all? Super Marmite is a French social network that enables members to sell portions of unused meals to the local community. • A few restaurants are instituting penalties for those who don’t finish their food, such as Wafu in Sydney, which bars offending patrons from returning, and a Saudi Arabian restaurant that fines diners and donates some of the money to help the hungry in Somalia. • To increase awareness, the Food Network aired a primetime special, The Big Waste, in January. Image credits: Wafu; Food Network 28
  29. FIGURE 2A: FIGURE 2B: Percentage of American and British adults who agree: Percentage of American and British adults who agree: Millennials (21-34) Gen Xers (35-47) Boomers (48-67) Male Female I’m concerned about 66 I’m concerned about the environmental 65 the environmental impacts of food waste 61 64% impacts of food waste 64 64 I would respect a grocery store 86 or restaurant that made an 91 effort to curb food waste I would respect a 91 grocery store or restaurant that 88 89% made an effort to I’ve tried to cut down on the 75 curb food waste 87 amount of food waste I produce for the sake of the environment 82 I’ve tried to cut down 84 on the amount of food waste I produce for the sake of the environment 76 79% 76 *For generational and gender breakdowns by country, see Appendix. 29
  30. FIGURE 2C: FIGURE 2D: Percentage of American and British adults who agree: Percentage of American and British adults who agree: Millennials (21-34) Gen Xers (35-47) Boomers (48-67) Male Female 87 Restaurants have a 82 Restaurants have a responsibility to help responsibility to help curb food waste 86 85% curb food waste 88 83 Brands and manufacturers 81 have a responsibility to 90 help curb food waste 84 Brands and manufacturers have a responsibility to 81 84% help curb food waste Grocery stores have 79 80 a responsibility to help curb food waste 83 84 Grocery stores have The government has 69 a responsibility to help curb food waste 84 82% a responsibility to help curb food waste 73 78 86 The government has a responsibility to help curb food waste 74 74% 61 *For generational and gender breakdowns by country, see Appendix. 30
  31. “A global shift towards a vegan diet is vital to save the Vegan Until 6: New York Times food writer Mark Bittman world from hunger, fuel poverty and the worst impacts has been arguing that a vegan diet is healthier for humans of climate change,” concluded a 2010 U.N. report, as and the planet alike for several years. His suggestion: Cut summarized by The Guardian. Until fairly recently, out animal-derived foods every day before 6 p.m. vegans and vegetarians most commonly cited “animal “Weekday Vegetarianism”: Graham Hill, founder of rights” as their ethical motivation, but increasingly the the environmental site TreeHugger.com, advocated this environmental benefits are sharing equal if not top billing. approach in a 2010 TED talk. And the idea of eating less, very little or no meat for environmental reasons is gaining ground. If you’re a progressive, if you’re driving a Prius or you’re shopping Meatless Monday: This campaign to reduce meat green or you’re looking for organic, consumption, which emphasizes both health and you should probably be a semi-vegetarian.” environmental benefits, has steadily gained adherents —MARK BITTMAN, 2007 Entertainment over the past few years. Some school districts and Gathering Conference universities have instituted Meatless Mondays, and some © The Monday Campaigns, Inc restaurants have added vegetarian specials on Mondays, March to a including the 14 owned by celebrity chef Mario Batali. different drumstick. Paul McCartney initiated a similar idea in the U.K., Go meatless Meat Free Monday, and is promoting the new Meat Free Monday. Monday Cookbook, to benefit the campaign. One day a week, cut out meat. Image credit: meatlessmonday.com 31
  32. Several governments and businesses are trying to push six-legged creatures—a staple in regions around the world— onto Western menus as a sustainable protein source. Nutrition-rich, insects require far fewer natural resources to raise and produce far less waste than poultry and livestock. The European Commission has allocated £2.65 million to look into the idea, and the Dutch ministry of agriculture is funding a research program to raise insects for human consumption on food waste. In the past two years, three Dutch animal feed companies have started raising locusts and mealworms, which are freeze-dried, packaged and sold in various food outlets catering to restaurants. Image credit: theefer 32
  33. What if meat could be created in a lab, rendering moot the environmental toll of raising livestock? Scientists have actually managed to grow meat in a test tube (“in vitro meat”), and several dozen labs are said to be working on developing the concept, using stem cells. The Netherlands and Brazil are among the governments funding research. Last year a study by scientists at the University of Oxford and the University of Amsterdam found that producing lab-grown meat vs. the same amount of conventional meat would emit far fewer greenhouse gases, require 7% to 45% less energy, and use a tiny fraction of the land and water that livestock need. The study’s lead scientist predicted that if enough resources go toward the research, a lab-grown meat akin to mincemeat could come to market within five years. (Steak-like meat could take much longer.) Image credit: Trondheim Havn 33
  34. The production of palm oil, an ingredient in an array of packaged foods (and frequently an alternative to trans-fat oils), often results in deforestation and habitat destruction. Awareness of the issue is bubbling up, with manufacturers slowly switching over to sustainable palm oil or pledging to do so. Watch for brands to tout their use of GreenPalm certificates (akin to offsets) or conformance with various certification standards. This year, boxes of Girl Scout cookies started bearing the GreenPalm logo. Image credit: rainforestheroes.com 34
  35. The rooftop-gardening concept increasingly popular among restaurants and hotels is evolving into large-scale farming projects. Brooklyn Grange, for example, is a rooftop organic farm that sells its produce in markets and businesses around New York City; in the U.K., Food From the Sky, is a similar initiative atop a supermarket in London that sells produce in the market below. And BrightFarms is a New York-based company focused on helping food merchants transform their roofs. Image credit: signejb 35
  36. • The need for new, greener practices around food will become increasingly clear to brands and consumers as demand spikes, natural resources get squeezed and climate change wreaks havoc on the supply chain. As consumers better understand how their food choices impact the environment, they will slowly change their habits—motivated both by price spikes and conscience—and expect food brands to similarly evolve. • Brands will need to take concrete steps to lessen the impact of their production and distribution—whether by reducing waste, ensuring products are sustainably sourced, supporting green farming practices or helping to drive smarter consumption, among other measures. Brands that help to engineer a smarter food chain can set industry standards as the issue grows more pressing. The Barilla Center for Food & Nutrition, run by the Italian food brand, developed the “Double Food-Environment Pyramid” to illustrate the impact of food choices. Image credit: barillacfn.com 36
  37. FIGURE 2E: Consumer Awareness Around Food • Millennials will drive this trend as they mature into more Production and the Environment influential consumers, as they’re more cognizant than Percentage of American and British adults who agree with each of the following: other generations of the links between food and the environment and more open to adjusting their behavior. Millennials (18-33) Gen Xers (34-46) Boomers (47-66) While Millennial respondents to a November 2011 JWT The food I eat has 78 survey were significantly more likely than Gen Xers and an impact on the environment 68 71% Boomers to say they don’t know how to make more 66 sustainable food choices, they’re also more interested in I would like to doing so—and more aware of the basic link between what make smart 80 they eat and the environment (see chart at right). food choices that benefit the 73 74% environment 70 I don’t know how 62 to make smart food choices that benefit 48 50% the environment 40 Food manufacturers have a responsibility 77 to educate the public about the 79 76% environmental impact of their dietary choices 72 * To learn more about Food as the New Eco-Issue, see our 10 Trends for 2012. 37
  38. • BYO Containers As the eco spotlight focuses on the environmental costs of packaging, brands will increasingly switch to bottles, boxes and • Reusable Packaging other solutions that reduce, reuse, recycle, remove and renew. • Hydration Stations The ultimate goal is “cradle-to-cradle” packaging—sustainable from creation to disposal. • What It Means for Brands Image credit: nist6ss 38
  39. More grocery shoppers are bringing their own bags, and now Meanwhile, more types of products are getting the idea of bringing your own containers (“precycling” by unpackaged. Olive oil dispensers are becoming avoiding the need to recycle) is slowly catching on as well. popular, and some stores are offering other liquids in bulk, like honey or syrup. Growler stations have • In London, Unpackaged is a boutique grocery store that become a common sight, allowing customers to refill sells bulk products—grains, nuts, herbs, teas, cheeses and the jugs with draft beer. so on—as well as goods in returnable/refillable jars or bottles (milk, jam, etc.). Time Out lists it as one of the best shops in the city. • Simply Bulk Market in Longmont, Colo., is positioned as both a greener and more economical way to shop: “Pay for the Product, Not for the Package,” says the website. “Buy as little as you want or as much as you need!” • In the planning stages in Austin, Texas, is in.gredients, which promises to replace “that middle section of the usual grocery store” with local or locally sourced “real” food that’s packaging-free or minimally packaged with recyclable materials. • In Chicago, Real Naked Food sells “mostly unpackaged” goods. Image credits: Simply Bulk Market; Red Rock Brewing; in.gredients 39
  40. One way to make packaging more sustainable is to find ways for the consumer to reuse it or refill it: • KFC introduced what it billed as the “first reusable container in fast food” in 2010 to replace the foam containers in which side dishes were packaged. While most consumers will eventually toss them, they’re made from a resin that KFC says is more widely recyclable than polystyrene and uses less energy to produce. • In the U.K., JUGIT sells a milk jug that customers refill with bags of milk from supermarkets. The company claims the bags use 75% less packaging than standard plastic milk bottles. Similarly, Kenco coffee sells Eco Refills that shoppers buy after initial purchase of the jarred product; customers can then send in the refill packs to TerraCycle. • Ecovention markets a pizza box that breaks down into four plates and a smaller leftovers box, avoiding use of paper plates and foil for uneaten slices. Adoptees include Pizza Hut Costa Rica. Image credits: KFC; Kenco 40
  41. No more awkward tilting to fill a bottle at a drinking fountain: As the movement to cut the use of plastic and ban the sale of bottled water grows, we’ll see a proliferation of hydration stations—already popping up on college campuses and in some public spaces—designed to allow people to easily fill reusable bottles. Image credits: Hydrate U; britahydrationstation.com 41
  42. FIGURE 3A: FIGURE 3B: Percentage of American and British adults who agree: Percentage of American and British adults who agree: Millennials (21-34) Gen Xers (35-47) Boomers (48-67) Male Female Food manufacturers need to cut down 84 Food manufacturers 87 on the amount of need to cut down 89 on the amount of 85 86% packaging they use packaging they use 86 79 Most foods use too much packaging 86 82 Most foods use too much packaging 81 82% I try to limit the amount of 67 82 food packaging I waste each day 77 I try to limit 74 I’m buying less bottled water because of the 57 the amount of food packaging I waste each day 68 71% environmental impact of the plastic bottles 66 72 I make my food purchasing decisions 39 70 based on how much I’m buying less bottled packaging is used 35 water because of the environmental impact 61 63% of the plastic bottles 57 I make my food 48 purchasing decisions based on how much 42 40% packaging is used 30 *For generational and gender breakdowns by country, see Appendix. 42
  43. • With green initiatives now a necessity rather than a competitive advantage, it’s becoming imperative for brands to retool their packaging, and to do so according to an expanding range of criteria (packaging should be manufactured using clean technologies, designed to optimize materials and energy, use as much renewable or recyclable material as possible, and so on). Simply swaddling goods in fewer layers or reducing the weight of bottles and calling it a day won’t be enough. • We’ll see more tech innovations that help companies meet these criteria (e.g., using bio-based materials for packaging), as well as simple solutions that rethink the status quo, such as refillables. Consumers—many of whom now bring their own bags on shopping trips—will increasingly notice, and appreciate, these changes. • Pressures to improve packaging are coming not only from consumers but from the CFO’s office: Greener packaging frequently reduces costs, in line with today’s growing interest in Shared Value (one of our 10 Trends for 2012). *To learn more about The Devil Wears Packaging, see our 10 Trends for 2010. 43
  44. • Fooducate • Inhaling Awareness of good nutritional habits has been steadily rising, • Nutrition Scores • Smart Lunchrooms even as obesity becomes a more pressing issue—in turn driving • Fat Taxes • Organic Fast Food governments and health advocates to further push both consumers • Healthy and Fresh • What’s New in and brands to adopt healthier ways. Vending Machines Functional Foods • Gluten-Free • What It Means for Brands • Hold the Salt Image credit: epSos.de 44
  45. One consequence of more consumers Reading the Fine Print (one of our 10 Trends for 2010) is that they’re seeking out tools that save them time and brainpower by simplifying and summarizing the information they’re interested in. Apps fit the bill perfectly. For those focused on nutritional information, Fooducate allows users to scan the barcode of a supermarket item to quickly see product highlights, negative and positive, as determined by the company’s team of dietitians and “concerned parents.” What’s revealed is “stuff manufacturers don’t want you to notice,” says Fooducate, like excessive sugar or confusing serving sizes. Shoppers can also compare products, select alternatives and learn about food and nutrition generally. The app, which launched in January 2011 for the iPhone (and in June for Android), passed 10 million product scans by November. The most scanned categories: yogurt, cereal and snack bars. Image credit: Fooducate 45
  46. Since more consumers are interested in Reading the Fine • Whole Foods developed Print, some U.S. supermarkets are giving them a shortcut, what it calls ANDI (aggregate adopting nutrition-scoring systems: Ratings are displayed nutrient density index), which on shelves, helping shoppers make healthier choices at a rates unprocessed foods on glance. a scale up to 1,000 (a score achieved by kale). The intent • NuVal rates products from 1 to 100, with a higher is to help shoppers compare options within categories, score indicating a healthier item. A range of regional e.g., choosing which variety of bean to buy. supermarkets have adopted the system. • Guiding Stars is less nuanced, • Safeway’s SimpleNutrition program evaluates products and allots up to two “benefit messages” per tag, such as granting from zero to three stars “Good Source of Fiber,” “Sodium Smart,” “Lean Protein” based on a food’s nutrient density and “Low Cholesterol.” per 100 calories. It’s used by a few supermarket chains, as well as school and hospital cafeterias. Image credits: Guiding Stars; Whole Foods 46
  47. The fat tax is the new sin tax: In a bid to put the brakes on obesity, governments will try to push consumers away from unhealthy foods with cost disincentives. In 2011, Hungary introduced an added tax for foods with high fat, salt and sugar content, along with a higher tariff on soda (and alcohol), while Denmark added a tax for high-saturated- fat foods. Similar legislation was proposed in Australia and Britain. And at year-end, France approved a tax on sugary soft drinks. Look for more national and local governments to follow. Image credit: pointnshoot 47
  48. In recent years vending machines have been moving beyond In France, one baker is touting his automated baguette food into new categories, dispensing everything from gold bars dispenser—which is loaded with partially precooked loaves to prescription drugs. But we’re also seeing new thinking within that get fully baked when the machine is activated—as a food itself as machines get refocused for health-conscious way to get fresh bread when bakeries are closed. And the consumers and retooled as devices for selling fresh rather than Smart Butcher, out of Alabama, vends fresh cuts of meat packaged foods—everything from milk to fish and meat. and sausages. Machines that sell snacks like carrots and apples, hummus, meal replacement bars and yogurt are popping up in response to consumer interest in nutritious eating, employer interest in healthier workers and legislation aimed at limiting junk food in schools. Ecowell’s kiosks address both health and environmental concerns: Using their own reusable containers, customers order up personalized beverages that combine fruit juice flavors, sweeteners and vitamin supplements with carbonated or flat water. Fresh-milk machines that allow users to refill their own bottles can be found in several Spanish cities. Also in Spain: a machine filled with portions of fresh fish and one that vends loaves of bread, restocked daily by a baker. Image credit: drinkecowell.com 48
  49. One of our Things to Watch in 2009, The phenomenon is widespread: Gluten-free offerings can gluten-free foods have mushroomed be found in restaurants, supermarkets and bakeries from from a specialized segment of the Argentina and Australia to Germany and Italy (where the food industry into the mainstream— government subsidizes celiacs’ gluten-free purchases). Even to the tune of $2.7 billion in global McDonald’s has hopped on the bandwagon, offering gluten- sales in 2011, according to a free buns in several European Euromonitor International estimate, countries, and Subway is testing a with the market set to reach $3.4 billion by 2015 (some gluten-free roll and brownie. other estimates put the total much higher). While celiac disease, the autoimmune disorder triggered by gluten, affects only about 1% of the population, a range of consumers are embracing these foods: Proponents say a gluten-free diet can stimulate weight loss and help with chronic intestinal issues as well as diseases including autism and schizophrenia. And while these benefits are unproven, new gluten-free products continue to land on shelves, from baking mixes by Betty Crocker and Rice Krispies by Kellogg’s to gluten-free flour developed by chefs Lena Kwak and Thomas Keller of the restaurant The French Laundry. Image credits: asgw; simply...gluten-free; Bouchon Bakery 49
  50. Governments around the globe are passing on salt in The challenge remains to sell consumers what’s best for a bid to reduce hypertension, stroke and other health them but perhaps not what’s tastiest. Last year Campbell’s problems. National and regional authorities are pushing decided to add salt to more than two dozen soups, sodium-reduction initiatives, including Canada, Australia, following poor sales of its low-sodium offerings. Ireland, France, Finland and Japan. Among the measures being taken: • Restaurant tables in Argentina’s Buenos Aires province no longer feature salt shakers, thanks to a 2011 agreement with the health department, which also persuaded the breadmaker federation to cut salt by 40%. • New York City’s health department is coordinating the National Salt Reduction Initiative, a coalition of regional health authorities and organizations that’s working to push food manufacturers and restaurants to cut salt. Modeled on a successful U.K. program, its goal is to lower Americans’ salt intake by 20% over five years. In response to various campaigns, industry-leading companies including Heinz, McCain Foods, Unilever, Kraft and Mars have made voluntary commitments to cut salt. Image credit: L. Marie 50
  51. From a Harvard professor of biomedical engineering comes Breathable Foods, a company that’s rolling out inhalable caffeine, vitamins and chocolate. AeroShot Pure Energy is an inhaler containing a hit of caffeine mixed with B vitamins; Le Whif provides a chocolate experience sans calories. The company is working on more products that provide flavorful or nutritional benefits without calories or the need for pills. Image credit: labstoreparis.com 51
  52. As obesity rates continue to climb worldwide, we’ll see experimentation in school and workplace cafeterias, with offerings rearranged to encourage smarter choices—e.g., more nutritious selections at the front of the line, and fruit in attractive bowls. Red tongs for higher-calorie selections and other sly cues will prompt people to reconsider their choices. Image credits: Dr Stephen Dan; Javi Vte Rejas 52
  53. Organic (or close to it) is an increasingly popular hook in quick-service restaurants. Chipotle has staked its claim on “Food With Integrity” and uses “organic and local produce when practical,” as well as meat free from antibiotics or added hormones. Smaller chains such as Naked Pizza (which claims “no freaky chemicals”), Pizza Fusion, Elevation Burger and EVOS are popping up around the U.S. Watch for more mainstream QSRs to adopt some of their practices. Moe’s Southwest Grill, for instance, which operates 400-plus outlets, started using more “natural” meats about a year ago, such as grain-fed pork that’s hormone- and steroid-free. Image credit: Moe’s 53
  54. For the past decade or so, the idea that food can offer Artery-Cleaning Foods: The next hot specific benefits—beyond simply providing good nutrition— functional foods may be those that claim has permeated mainstream thinking. We’ve seen all to clean out arteries, or more technically, manner of foods carrying health claims, and the rise reduce oxidized LDL cholesterol. Stratum (and sometimes fall) of super-foods, from acai berries Nutrition is marketing a powdered fiber to pomegranate. These are a few of the things today’s product to food and beverage brands that consumers are or will be looking to for functional benefits. it claims can promote healthy arteries. Approved by the EU Commission and some other administrations as safe, the Food, Ph.D.: We’ll see many more science-inspired product is making its way across the globe. food products engineered to target conditions and beauty needs. Nestlé is investing more than $500 Mushrooms: What’s new about edible fungi? With more million to develop health and wellness products, varieties now populating supermarket shelves in the West, and created the Nestlé Institute of Health Sciences in 2011 we’ll see a growing awareness that this low-calorie but highly “to pioneer a new industry between food and pharma.” flavorful food packs a nutritional punch. Euromonitor notes Unilever is researching technology that can imbue ingestibles that the benefits of mushrooms—which can lower cholesterol, with anti-aging and other beauty benefits. In 2011 its Dove boost the immune system and (some say) brand started marketing Strength Within, an anti-wrinkle even fight cancer—“remain woefully supplement, in the U.K. and Ireland. underappreciated”; with consumers looking to add more functional foods to their diet, they won’t remain overlooked for long. Image credits: Dovespa.co.uk; wwarby; trekkyandy 54
  55. Matcha: The powdered green tea—which originated in Japan and is a centerpiece of the Japanese tea ceremony— is becoming a hot flavor internationally, with an artisanal quality reflected in its price tag. It’s a functional ingredient, high in both antioxidants and caffeine, that’s increasingly popping up in beverages (from lattes to cocktails) and desserts (ice cream, pastries and more). Slow Beverages: Slow-down beverages are being marketed as anti-energy drinks: Brands including Slow Cow, Drank, Bula and Koma Unwind are fortified with ingredients such as chamomile, melatonin and valerian root that purportedly promote calming and relaxation. Some brands take on the energy-drink category directly by claiming to also boost mental focus and concentration. The beverage research group Zenith International forecasts that U.S. volume sales will top 300 million liters by 2014. Image credits: Teavana; bulabeverage.com; komaunwind.com 55
  56. Greek Yogurt: This richer, more dense style of yogurt has caught fire in the U.S., thanks in part to “a perception that the food is healthier than regular yogurt and other snacks,” The New York Times reports. National retail sales more than doubled for the year ending October 2011, and last March UBS noted that “Greek yogurt brands such as Chobani and Fage have captured market share more quickly than almost any segment in a major food category ever.” This April, the TCBY frozen yogurt chain will introduce Greek Fro-Yo, extending the concept into a new category. Spices: Interest in the functional qualities of foods is expanding to include a greater focus on the benefits of spices and seasonings. For instance, ground cloves, cinnamon and oregano are notably rich in antioxidants. McCormick & Co. is spotlighting the health benefits of selected herbs and spices, with commercials that drive viewers to a “Spices for Health” section on the brand’s website, where they can find recipes and suggestions for how to add “super spices” to their diet (e.g., “Perk up your morning coffee with Ground Cinnamon”). Image credits: TCBY; McCormick & Co. 56
  57. Juicing Up Coconut: Coconut water, one of our Things to Watch in 2010, has been steadily gaining in popularity. Leading brand Vita Coco, for example, has zoomed from reported sales of $20 million in 2009 to $40 million in 2010 to a forecast of $100 million in 2011. The recent spike is partly due to coconut water getting adopted as a sports drink because of its electrolyte content. Beverage brands are continuing to introduce coconut juice products. PepsiCo’s SoBe, for example, said it was putting a “new twist on a hot trend” when it announced a Lifewater with Coconut Water line of three flavors in January. Coconut foods are also seeing a boom, thanks in part to the Paleo diet, which promotes cooking with coconut oil and eating other coconut products. Coconut is also being used as a dairy alternative in ice cream. Image credits: akeg; SoBe 57
  58. Nutricosmetics: A burgeoning class of foods seeks to • BORBA Skin Balance Water, billed as “drinkable improve external appearances rather than internal skin care,” offers four varieties that address functioning. Medical experts are somewhat skeptical different issues—Age Defying, Firming, Clarifying about the functionality claims, but the proof will be in the and Replenishing—and include ingredients pudding—or Balance Bar, as the case may be. like pomegranate, acai berry and lychee. They’re available at some drugstores, high-end • Balance Bar recently introduced the department stores and gyms. BORBA sells Gummi Nimble bar, touting it as “the first Bears with similar beauty claims. bar for women that conveniently combines beauty and nutrition.” • Deo perfume candy, from Beneo, is said to work much The front of the package lists like garlic but with rose oil instead: Compounds that are ingredients including lutein and not digested are emitted through skin pores. It’s sold in beta-carotene as “for your skin.” several Eastern European markets. • Frutels markets foil-wrapped chocolates billed as “acne care in a candy” that help purchasers achieve “clear skin from the inside out.” Sold in drugstores and food shops, the sweets contain vitamins and minerals that strengthen the body against the stress and hormonal changes that can cause acne, or so the claim goes. • Beauty Booster from IO Beauty is a thick liquid, a few drops of which purportedly produce more luminous skin. Image credits: Balance Bar; BORBA 58
  59. • Consumers will continue to tailor their diets to add foods that naturally provide internal and even external benefits and to remove anything perceived as problematic, from gluten and various allergens to salt and processed foods (a recent Nielsen Global Survey found that 35% of respondents who were changing their diet to lose weight said they are eating fewer processed foods, up from 29% in 2008). • This is true for most of the developed world, but many emerging markets are on a different curve, with health and wellness ideas yet to hit consumers who have more money and more available global goods to spend it on. (Fast-growing Mexico, for instance, is now second worldwide in obesity.) Conversely, developed-world consumers hit by the downturn are struggling to balance their wellness and budget concerns. • The downturn may also be helping to spur Live a Little, a countertrend to health and wellness that’s detailed in this report: Faced with constant reminders about what to do and what not to do, and fatigued from austerity measures, consumers will look for ways to let loose once in a while: indulging in sinful things, splurging on treats and so on. As governments push better eating through fat taxes, labeling regulations and other initiatives, and as social norms evolve toward “better for you” behaviors, we’ll see more self-control/guilt fatigue and a heightened rebellious appeal to “bad” eating. 59
  60. • Labeling Legalities Competitive pressures and legal requirements are forcing • Tell-All Vending Machines manufacturers and retailers to take transparency to the max, disclosing more about nutritional data, green credentials, sourcing, • Going Behind the Scenes social responsibility issues (Fair Trade, etc.) and the people and • Visual Fluency processes behind the brand. • What It Means for Brands Image credit: Family O’Abé 60
  61. Government pressure on brands to disclose more • Watch for more heated efforts to push labeling of genetically information—and consumer pressure on governments to modified foods in the U.S., a cause with high-profile mandate more disclosure—is building. For instance: advocates including ex-Stonyfield CEO Gary Hirshberg and Food, Inc. director Robert Kenner. (The EU mandates • The European Union established new food labeling labeling, as do Japan, Australia and Brazil, among others.) requirements last year that will become mandatory in Some states are considering their own legislation. 2016. Packaging will need to use a minimum font size to show nutritional data (energy, sugar, salt, carbohydrate, fat and saturated fat content), allergens must be highlighted on ingredients lists and type of vegetable oil must be specified. Highly caffeinated drinks must state the actual caffeine content. • As part of President Obama’s health care reform law in 2010, U.S. restaurant chains will need to clearly disclose calorie counts (and make additional nutritional data available upon request), while vending machine operators will need to display calorie information for certain items, with the new rules going into effect this year. The U.K.’s Department of Health is pushing restaurants to reveal calorie counts, and several chains started doing so last year, including KFC, McDonald’s and Pret a Manger. Image credit: CSPinet.org 61
  62. Touch screens that link with vending machines display nutritional data so that customers can make more informed decisions. They also allow operators to meet an upcoming U.S. Food and Drug Administration requirement (covering most vending machines) to show calorie counts for the products within. VendScreen, a startup, is one of the companies marketing these screens. Its Android-powered device features an avatar (“Jen”) who can sort through products based on the customer’s dietary needs or simply provide nutrition info. The device enables a machine to accept “mobile wallet” as well as credit card payments. The company reports strong demand, though the screens haven’t been rolled out yet. The touch screens can also offer promotions or accept coupons, opening the door to new opportunities for brands to connect with customers at point of purchase. Image credit: VendScreen 62
  63. There’s a new, expanded answer to the question, Where does my food come from? The rising preference for local foods and supporting small farmers and for more natural foods, as well as concerns about food safety, has driven a surge in disclosure about the farm-to-fork journey, the people behind that journey and how the process works. Among big brands, the aim is to showcase human stories and simple processes (read: not overly industrialized) behind the mass production. • A new McDonald’s campaign profiles three of its smaller suppliers—potato and lettuce farmers and a cattle rancher—with videos about the men and their work at mcdonalds.com/suppliers. • Domino’s “Behind the Pizza” campaign includes a commercial in which a focus group is surprised with a visit to the farm where the chain sources its tomatoes. Behindthepizza.com features mini games where players can “learn about Domino’s farm-grown ingredients.” Image credits: McDonald’s; Domino’s 63
  64. • To show that its chickens are truly free-range, the website for Australia’s ecoeggs features a “ChookCam,” a live remote camera that viewers can control to see the animals in real time (the camera is off at night). • Lay’s rolled out a kiosk in Buenos Aires supermarkets that displays a “hyper-realistic” video of the chip-making process to show that the chips are made from real potatoes, vegetable oil and salt—assuring customers that the “natural” claim is authentic. Image credits: ecoeggs.com.au; Lay’s 64
  65. FIGURE 5A: FIGURE 5B: Percentage of American and British adults who agree: Percentage of American and British adults who agree: Millennials (21-34) Gen Xers (35-47) Boomers (48-67) Male Female I like when 81 I like when commercials commercials show show me the “behind the 69 me the “behind the scenes” story about 73 73% scenes” story about the food I consume 74 the food I consume 65 I wish I knew more about how the food I eat is 68 produced (how it is grown I wish I knew more 80 or who is growing it) 71 about how the food I eat is produced (how 71 71% Brands do not disclose it is grown or who is enough information about 68 growing it) 63 the environmental impact of their food products, how their 71 Brands do not disclose food is made or where the enough information 81 ingredients come from about the environmental impact of their food 66 70% products, how their food is made or where the 64 ingredients come from * For generational and gender breakdowns by country, see Appendix. 65
  66. As the ongoing shift from words to images accelerates, In the U.K., Waitrose’s line of LOVE life “you count” we’re seeing increasingly innovative ways to spotlight and products, designed for calorie counters, features packaging illuminate complex topics (one of our 10 Trends for 2010). that boldly states how many calories the item contains. Visual Fluency can help brands make the information Shoppers can see immediately what will work best for they’re disclosing easier to grasp at a glance. It’s sorely them as they plan out meals. needed: Lack of Visual Fluency is one reason nutritional labels are understood only “in part” by a majority of consumers (52% vs. 41% who understand them “mostly”), according to a recent Nielsen global survey. Image credit: Waitrose 66
  67. • This trend represents a coming together of the green movement, the health and wellness movement, government anti- obesity efforts, the local movement, fears about food safety and, of course, the transparency trend. • While pressure to disclose is coming in part from consumers, many may not actually want all that much information or alter their behavior once exposed to it. When it comes to calorie data, for example, half of respondents to a recent global Nielsen survey felt that fast food menus should always include calories, and some studies have shown that diners don’t order much differently when menus are labeled. But since calorie labeling frequently reveals a dearth of smart options, restaurants are nonetheless being embarrassed into reducing serving sizes, adding lighter fare, making simple substitutions that cut calories and so on. • As more data is disclosed, however, people who once thought little about these details are starting to take note; the ranks of the conscious consumer are growing. The challenge is for brands to make this information clearly understandable, both in terms of visual fluency and basic consumer education. • In some cases, it’s likely that the simple fact of disclosure will matter more to consumers than the specific information revealed. But ultimately, brands that don’t become healthier and more sustainable will lose ground, especially if they’re not competitive on price. *To learn more about Maximum Disclosure, see our 10 Trends for 2010. 67
  68. Faced with constant reminders about what to do (exercise more, eat better) and what not to do (overspend, overeat), and fatigued • The Lipstick Index Effect from several years of austerity, consumers will look for ways to live • A Little Serving of Sin a little without giving up a lot. People have been exercising more self-control, and increasingly they’re looking to let loose once in • What It Means for Brands a while: indulging in sinful things, splurging on treats and at least momentarily escaping from today’s many worries. Image credit: J. Paxon Reyes 68
  69. Estée Lauder chairman emeritus Leonard Lauder coined the term “Lipstick Index” after observing that lipstick sales rose during the 2001 downturn as women treated themselves in affordable ways. While lipstick sales didn’t see an uptick this past recession, by and large the effect applies to arguably indulgent edibles like premium beer or high-end chocolate. After all, “living a little” is still cheaper than living large. As the FT put it, “For more everyday items, people are compensating for bigger treats foregone.” For example, some consumers are dining out less frequently but buying premium ingredients to cook at home. Image credit: Duvel 69
  70. More people will decide there is a time for everything— both restraint and rewards—and that they’d rather have a bit of something good than a lot of mediocrity. For instance, a Mintel report on ice cream sales in the U.S. finds that “full-fat, indulgent brands have performed well in the last year.” Consumers don’t want to feel life is passing them by as they behave more responsibly. Spanish deli brand Campofrío tapped into this idea with a commercial showing an old toad explaining that he was a human in his past life. But he was not gung ho on being one: “You need to learn English… control your calories, triglycerides…” But his younger friend breaks into song, imagining what he’d do “If I were a human”—“buy a Chihuahua, a waterbed and a mega ham platter.” The youngster is promptly hit by a truck and reincarnated as a handsome guy eating some ham. The voiceover: “You never know what you’ll become in the next life. So take good advantage of this one.” Image credit: Campofrío 70

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