Top Food and Beverage Production Trends Shaping the Industry for 2020 and Beyond

Friday, July 31, 2020

Top Food and Beverage Production Trends Shaping the Industry for 2020 and Beyond  

Even as food and beverage manufacturers face the ongoing challenges of meeting increased demand during the COVID 19 pandemictop producers continue to embrace some of the key trends being driven by environmental and social issues. Human rights, climate and sustainability, employee safety, animal welfare, and alignment with consumer brand focus on ‘purpose-driven consumption’ are top-of-mind for food and beverage manufacturers, through 2020 and beyond.   

In this posting, we explore some of the top food and beverage trends still dominating the industry, and with the potential to ride headwinds through the next decade of production. Industry analysts are documenting lots of momentum in the sub-markets of cannabis beverageplant-based, and dairy alternative production, and plant-based packaging. 

Plant-based Foods 
According to the Plant-Based Food Association in San Francisco, the plant-based market has grown from a fad with select regional interest to a market of $4.5 billion and growing. Parents and families especially are looking for plant-based versions of everything from pet food to ice cream, baked goods, and meats. Just last year, Euromonitor study documented that worldwide sales of meat substitutes will top $22.9 billion by 2023. 

Pea Over Soy Proteins
 
Soy proteins have been an indisputable staple of vegan diets for years, but consumers are now starting to realize the additional benefits of pea proteins: more amino acids, and many embracing the vegan lifestyle find pea proteins much easier to digest.  According to the most recent Pea Protein Market report from MarketsandMarkets™, market valuation grew to $745 million in 2020 and is expected to grow by 13.5 % through 2025. 

Alternate Dairy Products 
Driven by multiple health benefits, including increased cardiovascular health and diabetes control, consumers worldwide have embraced alternate dairy products such as soymilk, and nut-based alternatives like almond and cashew milk. The popularity of these products has really taken off, and the market reached $21.4 billion this year, with expected growth of$36.7 billion by 2025, according to MarketsandMarkets™. In 2019, Canada dropped dairy entirely from its national nutrition guide. Published by Health Canada, officials cited the fact that dairy consumption has been credibly linked to high blood pressure, high cholesterol and can increase the risk of developing cancer and diabetes. Nearly 70% of the Canadian populace is lactose intolerantin the U.S., growing numbers of families with dairy allergies are driving market growth for products like coconut and rice milkAlternative dairy producers are expanding in both countries, and the expansion is part of a wider global trend for more sustainably produced products as well. 

Cannabis Beverages 
The cannabis beverage market is expected to reach $2.8 billion by 2025. Non-alcoholic cannabis-infused beverages are the leading segment in 2020, as evidenced by the growth of products like Ocean Spray Cranberry’s Carry-On CBD sparkling water which launched this year, available in two CBD blends.  As legal restrictions change, analysts are forecasting more cannabidiol product availability throughout the U.S. 

Plant-based Packaging 
A different, more ‘heart connected’ consumer is increasingly concerned about the environmental impact of food production and in-home brands are taking notice. This trickles down to how raw materials are sourced during production, and to the actual plant where the products are made. Nearly 40% of global use of plastics is found in food packaging. The negative impact of plastic waste on animal ecosystems and the greater environment has been proven for decades, but companies are still searching for a scalable alternative. Bioplastics have emerged as one such choice and are made from renewable waste products including used vegetable oil and select food wasteCompanies like Nestle, Danone, and Unilever have joined forces with the Bioplastic Feedstock Alliance and are looking at second-generation bioplastics like byproducts of production in forestry, agriculture industries, as well as non-food waste like algae.