Indulgent, premium, healthy, and sustainable and clean, are the four leading trends driving growth in cocoa and chocolate, according a new report.
Today’s consumer is looking for ever-more indulgent flavours, textures and colours – and in doing so, inspiring new levels of creativity in sweet foods around the world, the research from Cargill found.
Demand for premium products is at an all-time high, with provenance also being a leading factor. In a response to this, manufacturers are increasingly declaring on pack the country where the product was manufactured, satisfying consumer desire to buy local.
Health and wellness trend
The health and wellness trend is leading consumers to avoid ingredients perceived as unhealthy, and look for those perceived as healthy.
In addition to the long-standing trend for sugar reduction and gluten-free, lactose-free claims are increasing in cocoa and chocolate products, with milk alternatives such as coconut milk increasing in popularity.
Where food comes from, how it is produced, and its true ethical and environmental cost, also really matter to today’s consumer, the report claimed.
Spreading their reach
Certified chocolate products are becoming more popular and spreading their reach out from chocolate tablets into dairy, bakery, biscuits and ice cream.
Answering consumer needs for more transparency, clean and clear labelling is also more important than ever, according to the Cargill report. In a quest to remove E-numbers, real fruits and plant extracts are being increasingly used to naturally colour products.
Today’s discerning consumer considers the contents of their food more than ever before, the report concluded.