Fresh salmon at market. Consumers are actively taking steps to improve their diets. (Photo: Stock File)
Omega-3 sales rocket
Friday, February 05, 2010, 02:40 (GMT + 9)
Sales of omega-3 products saw a boost of 42 per cent in 2009 due to increased consumer awareness and interest in healthy eating in combination with falling product prices, market researcher Nielsen said.
“Healthy eating costs less right now and despite the economy, consumers are actively taking steps to improve their diets,” noted Nielsen Director of Industry Insights Tom Pirovano.
“Consumers in the US might be trimming the fat from their budgets and diets, but contrary to predictions, they continue to demonstrate a healthy appetite for foods featuring health and wellness claims,” he continued.
Other foods benefitting from the trend include those containing antioxidants (+16 per cent), fiber (+12 per cent) and gluten-free/probiotic/calcium (all +13 per cent). Foods free of high fructose corn syrup (+29 per cent) and low glycemic/no salt or sodium added foods (+10 per cent) also experienced growth, Food and Drink reports.
As opposed to “upstart health and wellness claims,” Nielsen said that people are holding true to older and better-established beliefs on healthy diets.
Products touted as natural and good-for-you continued to perform positively with sales of USD 22.8 billion and USD 14.9 billion, respectively, with natural products outselling organic foods by some 4:1 in food, drug and mass merchandise retailers excluding Wal-mart. Reduced calorie food sales jumped by 6 per cent to USD 11.7 billion.
|Soy milk on a supermarket shelf. (Photo: Stock File)
But products claiming lower cholesterol skid by 5 per cent to USD 10.6 billion, Nielsen pointed out.
Soy-related health claims dropped by 6 per cent in the mainstream media and by 4.1 per cent in natural food channels, according to SPINS. Flax/hemp sales fell by 8 per cent to USD 137 million even though such products saw improvement in the health store channel.
“Savvy marketers understand that being part of a healthy lifestyle solution reflects positively on almost any brand - or retailer,” Pirovano explained.
“Retailers can further leverage and deepen their relationship with shoppers through programmes ranging from Wii Fit exhibitions on-site to light cooking demonstrations and product tastings. With no shortage of news stories on child obesity, families will continue to seek out brands and retailers offering healthy alternatives," he concluded.
- Demand for Omega-3 to soar: report
By Natalia Real