Insight by Gama Compass
MANCHESTER – 15th August 2018: With vegetables and other plant-based ingredients gaining a greater profile in the consumer goods sector, this month’s Insight By Gama Compass takes a timely look at the use of edible oil within food NPD, exploring trends in the use of sunflower, palm, rapeseed, olive, coconut and other plant oils and considering how these relate to prevailing consumer trends.
As a top-level observation, vegetable oils of all kinds continue to be fundamental to product formulations right across the food industry, with almost half of new food launches reported on Gama Compass from 2014 to 2018 listing one or more of the most common edible plant oils on their ingredient labels. Of the primary plant oil ingredients, sunflower oil has remained the most consistently popular in new launches since 2014, having featured on average of 19% new launches compared to next-placed rapeseed (canola) oil on 16%.
Meanwhile, one of the most interesting observations from the latest data is that the cost benefits and broad applications that have seen palm oil (and the related palm kernel oil) become ubiquitous across the food space are now apparently being mitigated by ethical concerns. Heightened awareness about the claimed ecological impacts of oil palm cultivation now seem to be feeding through into NPD, with both formulations and positioning responding to increased consumer consciousness in relation to environmental issues. In parallel to increased traction for ‘no palm oil’ claims, the percentage of launches containing palm or palm kernel oil is beginning to decline, with just 10% of food launches reported on Gama Compass in 2018 (YTD) containing palm / palm kernel oil compared to an average of 13% in 2017.
“The shifting patterns in the use of plant oils by manufacturers across the globe point to some interesting truths about consumer and innovation trends”, commented Gama editorial director Tom Warden. “The recently-observed decline in palm oil in new product launches highlights an aversion to ingredients seen as less ethical, while the rise of ‘healthy’ oils such as coconut and avocado are indicative of the importance given to ‘good fats’ in many modern dietary regimes. With dairy and animal ingredients increasingly being spurned by consumers, the future for many edible plant oils looks bright, especially as vegan and plant-based products become more and more of a mainstream feature of the new product landscape”.
Read more on trends in plant oils in the next issue of Gama News.
Source: Gama Compass
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Notes to editors
Tom Warden, Gama editorial director, is available for comment. To arrange an interview please contact +44 161 818 8700 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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