"Trends In" was the focus of this year's Ingredient Marketplace (marketplace.supplysideshow.com/), connecting hundreds of buyers and sellers across the health and nutrition industry for two-day's worth of seminars and shows featuring trends in probiotics, sweeteners, and proteins.
The event, held June 2 - 3 at the Jacob Javits Center in New York City, offered guests critical market information in some of the industry's hottest categories—from purchasing trends to important insight on the global marketplace—as well as hundreds of exhibitors showcasing new products.
• Trends and Innovations in Antioxidants with speaker A. Elizabeth Sloan, Ph.D., president and CEO of Sloan Trends, Inc.
• Trends and Innovations in The Consumer Protein Market with speaker Chris Schmidt, consumer health analyst for Euromonitor International
• Trends and Innovations in Sweeteners with speaker David Sprinkle, research director of Packaged Facts
One walk through the exhibition hall and it was clear—consumers are still interested in all natural products that improve their health. While that isn't something new in the health and nutrition sector, how those all natural products are delivered is. "Consumers believe that there is better benefit in whole foods," reports Dr. Sloan.
According to Yogesh Kamat, senior research analyst for MarketsandMarkets, specifically formulated functional foods are also on the rise. Consumers are looking for products like yogurts that aid in digestive health and cereals designed for heart health.
That may explain the rise in creating products using the latest and greatest "superfood" flavors like konaberry (the latest antioxidant from Hawaii), jabuticaba (collected from the Brazilian grape tree), and maca root (an excellent source of protein, iron and magnesium). "The antioxidant market is very strong, with 60 percent of consumers remaining loyal to a product due to its antioxidant content," says Dr. Sloan.
This trend can also be seen in the sweetener category. "The appeal of natural has gotten the attention of consumers. Honey is the only sweetener growing in sales, with monk fruit growing quickly behind," said Sprinkle.
Sprinkle also noted the growing trend towards hybrid products and blends. "The most innovation can be found in high-intensity and natural sweeteners," combining flavors like honey and sour cherry. "Sweetener products are becoming flavor products."
Companies are also becoming more innovative with the way products are delivered. Honey crystals and flavored water enhancers offer no mess and convenience for consumers on the go.