Imbibe CCO, Andy Dratt, Explores Sustainability Initiatives and Better-For-You Formulation Challenges

 In Blog, Food & Beverage Insider, Press

When formulating new beverages, F&B brands have been observing consumer trends and sustainability initiatives to create better-for-you products.

Beverage formulation that wins consumer loyalty takes a magical mix of art and science.

Andy Dratt, chief commercial officer at Imbibe, explained the challenges and solutions brands are facing, innovation opportunities in trending categories, and how to make the most impact in the marketplace at the SupplySide West 2022 Stage.

Four dominant consumer trends

Functional introduction, sugar reduction, plant-based “seduction” and sustainable production are four pillars that will continue to influence new product development for the next decade, Dratt said.

Consumers want more functionality in their food and beverage purchases, including vitamins and nutrients. Industry researchers found that 60% of consumers surveyed actively seek added functionality from food and beverage products.

Sugar reduction is a major goal of both consumers and companies—as 72% of consumers evaluated said they try to limit or avoid sugar entirely. In addition, major companies have pledged to reduce sugar in response to consumer demands and FDA limits.

“Plant-based seduction,” as Dratt called the trend, is reflected in the 40% of consumers who bought plant-based protein or dairy alternatives in the last six months. United States retail sales of plant-based food grew by 6.2% last year.

Sustainability claims are also gaining traction with consumers, Dratt said. Industry researchers found that 55% of consumers are more likely to buy packaged food with a sustainability claim, and 42% said they would share with brands the added costs associated with sustainable production.

To read the full article, visit Food & Beverage Insider.