Top 10 Health and Wellness Trends of 2006
Consumer interest in the concept of eating for heart health and new dietary supplement science will encourage the continued introduction of new “heart-healthy products” to the marketplace. This trend has real staying power.
During the second half of this year, what will be the health and wellness trends that drive new product innovation and sales for snack producers and wholesale bakers? The Natural Marketing Institute, Harleysville, Pa., listed its top trends in recent reports. Here’s a brief summary of what the institute is monitoring.
1. Changing demographics create health-and-wellness opportunities. Shifting demographics, such as household size, age, gender, lifestage and ethnicity, present new opportunities for many health-and-wellness products. Generational shifts among Matures, Boomers, Gen X, Gen Y and Millennials will dictate changes in marketing and product offerings.
2. Organic versus natural: The balance of price and benefits. While the marketplace is experiencing many new organic introductions from mainstream brands, including private label products, finding the optimal balance of price, benefits and consumer understanding levels will be the determining factor in consumer choice between natural and organic products.
3. Energy and vitality: Future platforms for growth. Look for an expansion of energy and vitality platforms across a variety of categories and brands. As concepts related to sustained energy, low glycemic and others help redefine the market, opportunities abound.
4. Ingredient/nutrient drivers. 2006 will see the continued propagation of specific ingredient/nutrient platform drivers across food/beverage and supplements, including omega-3, protein, gluten-free, low sodium, probiotics and others.
5. The proliferation of heart healthy products. Certainly the largest “health-related” opportunity, consumer interest in the concept of eating for heart health and new dietary supplement science will encourage the continued introduction of new “heart-healthy products” to the marketplace. This trend has real staying power with the right products and a good base of products upon which to build.
6.On-the-go healthy eating opportunities. Whether it’s grab-and-go healthy snacking or healthy foodservice and menu options, opportunities abound for the integration of health and wellness into away-from-home foods and beverages.
7.The next growth opportunities in nutritional supplements. Savvy manufacturers will seek to market new supplement formats beyond pills, and we will continue to see the proliferation of condition-specific supplements and the clinical science to back them.
8. Premium personal care. The growing market for natural and organic personal care products join forces with an increasing number of consumers seeking premium personal care products and benefits beyond their traditional use. Watch for more upscale natural and organic product introductions from all market sectors.
9. Individualism crosses categories. Consumers are compartmentalizing information and taking the pieces that apply to their beliefs and lifestyles to formulate their individual, personalized health plan. Evidenced in the new “My Food Pyramid” and the proliferation of products with specific health claims, marketers must take note of this very strong trend. Watch for new personalized supplements.
10. Corporate social responsibility: Values connectivity to brands. Social values, community involvement, and ethical consumption (both pre- and post-manufacturing) will continue to drive consumer connection to brands. Look for this trend to gain momentum in 2006 across many industries.
Editor’s Note: This article first appeared in the June 2006 issue of Stagnito’s New Products Magazine. Visit the Natural Marketing Institute at www.nmisolutions.com