Almonds ranked the No. 1 nut used in new food products worldwide for the second year in a row, according to the 2009 Mintel Global New Products Database.

The growth of new almond products from 2008 to 2009 (up 18%) outpaced both new food product introductions in general (up 15%) and new nut product introductions (up 12%).  There were 347 more almond product introductions than peanuts and 531 more new almond products than hazelnuts, the second- and third-place nuts respectively.

“Food manufacturers seem increasingly aware of almonds’ value and versatility as an ingredient and the fact that almonds are in demand by consumers all over the globe, as evidenced by all this new product activity,” says Stacey Humble, director, North America marketing and global strategic initiatives for Almond Board of California, Modesto, Calif. “Almonds are recognized by consumers and food professionals alike as a natural food that is both irresistibly delicious and nutritious – a ‘win-win combination.’” 

Historically, almonds have shown the strongest numbers in the bakery, snacks and confectionery categories and continued to perform well in those segments this year.

“According to Mintel's Global New Products Database, product introductions containing almonds continue to increase,” says Lynn Dornblaser, Mintel’s leading new products expert. “Almonds appear in virtually every product category, from beverages to bakery, from meals to sauces. The versatility of this nut – from sweet to savory applications, and from healthy to indulgent formulations – is what helps to ensure new product introductions grow every year.”