Dairy alternatives, which are currently growing aggressively, will continue to be a hotbed of innovation, especially through the development of new and uprising alternative proteins like oat, pea, vegetable and rice. Drinking milk will lead the way, following by other relevant dairy categories such as milk drinks, yogurt and ice cream.
At Food Ingredient India 2022, for example, we were serving up plant-based oat milk that is not only lactose-free but also high in protein and fibre, targeting consumers who are health conscious.
Foods that are part-animal product, part-plant-based, offering healthier and more sustainable alternatives to 100% meat or dairy products, are also poised for growth as the flexitarian movement gains traction. Some consumers are becoming increasingly aware that too much meat may not be the best for their well-being or the planet and are opting to ‘eat less and eat better’. Hybrid foods enable them to find a ‘green’ middle ground rather than making ‘black and white’ decisions about eating meat and dairy.
“Hybrid foods are an emerging trend but one that resonates with health-conscious consumers who aren’t 100% committed to plant-based but want to do their bit for the environment. The ability to include some meat or dairy content also makes hybrid products easier to formulate from a flavor and texture point of view, so these products are more likely to find acceptance with flexitarian consumers,” notes Sherlyn.