Natural Food Industry Trends Leading to Great Growth
Natural and organic products (food and otherwise) have exploded in sales and adoption for several decades, and the industry is growing at a rate far faster than conventional products. Now that natural products are more readily available in the mainstream, that pace is only expected to increase.
Growing at a pace of around 8% last year, the interest in natural and organic products is driven by consumer demand for healthier product options, corporate transparency, and food that they can feel good about eating and serving to their families. But consumer demand alone isn’t the only growth factor. Big players in the conventional food and beverage industry are investing in the natural marketplace in order to promote growth as well as stay competitive in the space. As these corporations take a vested interest in natural products, they bring financial leverage and long-time industry expertise to help propel the niche forward.
The result is a shelter of sorts for smaller startups in the natural food space; large companies with brand recognition help validate natural and organic sales, yet they still leave room for startups to stand on their own. Some major corporations go the extra mile and offer incubators for startups to learn and grow without being absorbed into one of these companies. Knowledge and experience are handed on, but young brands get a chance to build their companies independently.
New Aisles to Populate
Young, persistent startups saw early success in the natural food market by making it onto the shelves of Whole Foods, but in the growing and shifting food climate, there is now space on more shelves in more aisles. Conventional retailers are opening their doors to natural and organic products that were once relegated to specialty stores.
A number of food trends are taking the market by storm:
- Bone broths and saturated animal fats: amino acid-rich products touted for joint and digestive health.
- Beverage choices: including herbal-infused beverages, cold brew coffee, and efforts to improve the consistency and nutrition of plant-based dairy alternative “milks.”
- Growth in grain-free alternatives: eschewing simpler carbohydrates in favor of nuts, roots, seeds, and healthy oils and fats is now easier than ever with significantly more grain-free options in the marketplace.
The natural food industry’s growth has also had an impact on supporting industries—like packaging. Sustainable packaging solutions are a “natural” fit for natural products, so flexible packaging—including recyclable and compostable options—is often used. Looking for more information about flexible packaging solutions that would be a good match for your natural and/or organic product? Give us a call or contact us!
Natural Products Expo West
Eagle Flexible Packaging is excited to be exhibiting at Natural Products Expo West from March 7th – March 9th at the Anaheim Convention Center. Since last year’s expo, we have obtained the highest SQF rating by maintaining our SQF Level 2 Food Safety Certification and SQF’s Level 3 Quality Code Certification. Come visit us at booth 3560 where we will be showcasing Sustainable and Traditional Packaging as well as our spouted pouch capabilities.