By Cynthia Maxwell, Trend Forecasting

If your vegetarian, vegan or very health conscious your definitely aware of the growing plant-based food trends that are featured on Instagram, in cookbooks, diets, grocery stores and even restaurants.  Yes, there are restaurants that are 100% plant based like the famous west coast Café Gratitude.  The company supports local farmers, sustainable agriculture and environmentally friendly products.

In 2017 Americans spent $700 million on plant based meat substitutes according to Euromonitor International.. Wow! 

But did you know that there are other consumer areas that have been impacted by this plant- based trend?  Some of the options might surprise you!  Read on…

Lego has a Sustainable Materials Mission starting with all Lego botanical elements, leaves, bushes and trees, will be made from plant-based plastics by 2018.  By 2030, Legos mission is to have all Lego bricks made from sustainable materials. 

In the beauty industry, via bioengineering, natural ingredients are recreated through fermentation.  This process stops resources from being overused and ensures that there are enough ingredients to meet consumer demand. Also using biotech, chemical laden ingredients are replaced with plant- based versions in a more earth friendly way.   

Check out last month's Trend Perspectives: 2018 Color Trends

Though not new, we will see an increase in biodegradable packaging both in beauty and foods.  Packaging that contains seeds can be planted to sprout flowers and herbs.    There are now containers made from 100% compostable materials such as bamboo and sugarcane. Also look for new materials to replace plastic, possibilities include cocoa husk and rice cellulose.

Seen any t-shirts lately with Go Vegan, #VeganAF, Hardcore Vegan, Save Lives Go Plant Based, printed on them? There are a slew of statement verbiage apparel and accessory companies that are devoted to a plant-based lifestyle.  

Lifestyle is the key word here.  There are certainly enough plant-based product categories to affect a large portion of the consumers life.  This trend supports growing statistics focused on consumers striving for healthier lifestyle. 

Market research group Mintel has seen a 257% rise in products with vegan claims since their 2010-2011 research period.  

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I’m continually happy to shop H&M as they have made leaps in sustainability.  They are recognized by Textile Exchange Preferred Fiber & Materials Report 2017, as the second biggest user of organic and recycled cotton.  By 2030 they will only use 100% recycled or other sustainable sourced materials in all categories including home.

The largest food company in the world Nestle, predicts that plant-based food will continue to grow, and this food category is “here to stay”.

Being a vegetarian for over 20 years, I have found some of the things I used to have to make at home, like an actual good veggie burger, are now available at the grocery store.  The great part of this trend is the consumer is demanding that plant-based products are good for them and the environment.  With that said, we can throw on “THE FUTURE IS PLANT BASED” t-shirt and wear it proudly. 

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