The latest innovations in food technology
It’s a challenging and exciting time to work in food technology. Environmental impact from pollution, an aging population and obesity have led to progress in research and development that a decade ago would have seemed like the stuff of science fiction. It may be some years until we sit down to a 3D-printed meal, but there’s no doubt that the landscape is changing fast. In this article, we offer an overview of some of the latest trends and innovations in food technology.
New consumer preferences lead to an increased demand for healthier food
Demand for organic and healthier food has increased rapidly over the last decade, and the baby food market is no exception. Increased awareness about the environmental impact of meat and dairy production, combined with a rising interest among consumers for vegan, vegetarian and non-dairy foods has led to a demand for more specialist convenience products. Consumers across a wide range of demographics are seeking both adult and baby foods that cater to these requirements, but are as nutritious and tasty as regular products.
With the global organic baby food market projected to grow at a CAGR (Compound Annual Growth Rate) of 11.1% by 2024, it will be the manufacturers that succeed at driving down the high costs associated with these products that will succeed.
Protein and protein supplements to assist with healthy aging
Longer life expectancy and an increasingly active aging population have meant older people are looking to bolster their diet with protein-rich foods and supplements. Research published in 2019 confirmed the role of higher protein intakes to counteract the age-related loss of muscle tissue, strength and body functionality. With additional studies demonstrating that increases in protein don’t have a negative effect on kidney function, brands will be looking to support the aging population by helping them stay stronger and healthier for longer.
Health-conscious consumers seek alternatives to sugar
Sugar alternatives have been around for many years, but the perceived health risks associated with them, and issues with taste, have stalled their progress amongst health-conscious consumers. Brands are under pressure to lower sugar levels across a wide variety of products. The race is on for manufacturers to develop and launch healthier sweeteners from fruit or vegetable-derived syrups, or similar, to satisfy this market.
Watch this space.