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Brits might be famed for their love of roast beef and bacon sarnies but a new study has revealed growing numbers are now turning their backs on meat.
Just over a quarter of people – the equivalent of 16 million of the UK population – have started to cut down on the amount they eat, according to customer segmentation specialist Clusters, which carries out research into shopper attitudes and behaviour.
Of those reducing their meat intake, first to be sliced from dinner tables was beef (56%), followed by bacon (47%) and then pork (46%) and lamb (45%). In contrast, just 11% said they were avoiding chicken, which is thought to be healthier.
Using segmentation to uncover the differing motivations behind this move, Clusters found that one group in particular is steering clear of red meat due to health concerns. People in this segment tend to be aged 45-54, shop at Tesco, and usually buy standard product ranges (rather than value or premium). From this group, 69% noted health concerns to be a main motivator in their decision to cut back on meat and a further 37% said they are worried that eating too much red meat will lead to diseases such as colon cancer.
While health seems to be the primary motivation to reduce meat consumption, it was also found to be the main barrier. Interestingly, an equal number of people claim the reason they are not reducing their meat consumption is because they believe it’s good for their health.
These findings follow a number of high profile reports on the link between cancer and high meat consumption. At the end of 2015, the World Health Organization warned that there was ‘convincing evidence’ that processed meat such as sausages and ham caused colorectal cancer.
Managing director of Clusters Chris Cowan, who led the research, said: “Just as we have seen with smoking, raising public awareness is an extremely effective way of encouraging people to make changes to their lifestyles.
“Bowel cancer tends to affect older people, so it is interesting to note that this group is more likely to cut their meat consumption because it indicates that the health advice is working.
“Some supermarkets, like Sainsbury’s, are already trialing innovative schemes in store and online that encourage shoppers to switch their meat-based dishes for healthier, vegetable alternatives. Our research discovered that over a quarter of people would be ‘very likely’ to take part in a rewards programme like this which incentivised shoppers to make the swap. This trend is only likely to grow, so there are real gains to be made for the progressive retailers who stay ahead of the curve.
“This study also highlights the importance of segmentation in determining which groups should be targeted when it comes to health campaigns. The motivations and barriers behind people’s reasons for reducing meat intake should form a large part of any campaign, instead of taking a narrow view and focusing on demographics.”
Healthy Eating, Sustainability And Convenience Are Impacting The Global Packaging Market
Consumer focus on wellness, environmental impact and macroeconomic factors such as the growth of the middle class creating more disposable income are shaping the global packaging market, said Charles D. Yuska, president and CEO, PMMI, The Association for Packaging and Processing Technologies, at interpack.
These trends, highlighted in the 2017 Global Packaging Trends report, produced by Euromonitor and sponsored by leading packaging associations PMMI, Australian Packaging and Processing Machinery Association, Italian Manufacturers of Automatic Packing and Packaging Machinery, and the Processing & Packaging Machinery Trade Association, are impacting the types of machinery sourced by consumer packaged goods companies. Yuska cited global consumer demand for healthier foods as the impetus towards fresher food, clean labeling and organic products becoming center stage.
In particular, clean labels are becoming critical, according to PMMI’s recently released Trends in Food Processing Operations report.
“Thirty seven percent of U.S. consumers find it important to understand ingredients on food labels while 91 percent believe that products with recognizable ingredients are healthier,” Yuska said. “And, the rise in demand for organic food has fueled a more than 10 percent growth in this sector.”
In order to meet evolving customer wants, many food manufacturers are looking to new technology, such as High Pressure Processing (HPP) to extend shelf life while delivering fresher, safer food to the consumer. To help advance this technology, the Cold Pressure Council, convened by PMMI, is focused on the progression of HPP as a critical technology in the food and beverage industry.
The next trend emphasized by Yuska is the continued move to more sustainable packaging. PMMI’s 2016 Global Trends Impacting the Market for Packaging Machinery Market Research report highlighted sustainability as a key factor influencing all major regions. Customers are demanding minimal and less packaging waste while increases in the price of virgin materials are also driving demand for recycled materials.
Flexible packaging is also growing due to recyclability, affordability, lightweight and growth in packaged foods overall. This increase is especially evident in regions such as Asia Pacific, Western Europe, the Middle East and Africa. “The increased focus on sustainability drives the growing demand for more energy-efficient machines,” said Yuska. “With the growth of flexible packaging, we are seeing additional demand for filling and closing machines able to handle this type of packaging material.”
Lastly, one of the major macroeconomic trends that is impacting our industry is the growth of the middle class and a rise in disposable income. In developed regions, increased travel, busy lifestyles and growing health consciousness have increased demand for indulgent yet healthy foods, convenience foods, different portion sizes, different packaging designs and completely new foods.
“Consumer purchasing preferences are also changing. Online food sales are growing rapidly, a trend reinforced by the growing use of mobile phones and shopping applications,” adds Yuska.
Consumers welcome additional choices and are willing to pay more for products that are locally sourced, produced with quality ingredients and resonate as authentic. This trend toward more customization and increased premiumization, has fueled the need for increasingly flexible equipment that can handle shorter runs and more frequent changeovers.
Britain’s Sweet Tooth Helps Grocery Sales Rise At Fastest Rate Since 2013
The latest grocery market share figures from Kantar Worldpanel for the 12 weeks ending 23 April 2017, reveal the overall market has grown by 3.7% – the fastest rate since September 2013 and worth almost £1 billion in additional sales to the grocery sector.
Fraser McKevitt, head of retail and consumer insight at Kantar Worldpanel, comments: “All 10 major retailers are in growth for the first time in three-and-a-half years, when we last saw like-for-like grocery inflation as high as it is now. While prices do look set to rise further, the current inflation rate of 2.6% is still below the average level experienced by shoppers between 2010 and 2014.
“A strong Easter also contributed to the market’s growth this period. In the past 12 weeks British shoppers splashed out £325 million on Easter eggs with almost three quarters of the population buying at least one. Consumers plumped for more premium confectionery lines this year – the average price paid for an Easter egg rising by 8.6% to £1.65 – while 20 million packs of hot cross buns were bought in the Easter week alone.”
Fraser McKevitt continues: “Premium own label lines are continuing to see huge growth and Morrisons has been making the most of their popularity among consumers. Its ‘The Best’ line is performing well following last year’s launch and has attracted more affluent shoppers through its doors, helping Morrisons become the fastest growing big four retailer. However, this growth is behind the overall market and Morrisons’ total market share has slipped 0.2 percentage points to 10.4%.
“Asda has increased year-on-year sales for the first time since October 2014 thanks to a quarter of a million additional shoppers and a strong performance online, though its overall share fell by 0.4 percentage points to 15.6%.
“Sainsbury’s sales rise of 1.7% is the greatest it has seen since June 2014, with growth coming from all three channels – its Local convenience stores, larger supermarkets and online. At a category level, Sainsbury’s is performing well in the fresh and chilled aisles – fruit, vegetables and salads are up by 2.6%, suggesting its ‘Food Dancing’ campaign is resonating with consumers eager to try more scratch cooking. The retailer is now concentrating on bringing Argos counters into many of its stores and looking to exploit the increased footfall, although stronger growth among its rivals meant market share fell to 16.1% in the past 12 weeks.”
Tesco returned to growth with sales up 1.9% after sales were hit last period by a late Easter. Its own label sales increased by 6%, growing across all price tiers – cheapest, standard and premium – while share fell by 0.5 percentage points to 27.5%.
Fraser McKevitt comments: “Ocado has doubled its share since late 2014 and now accounts for 1.3% of supermarket sales. The retailer is growing at 10.8% – second only to Aldi and Lidl and considerably ahead of the overall online grocery market, which currently has a growth rate of 7.8%. While fewer than 3% of British households have shopped with Ocado in the past 12 weeks these consumers are considerably more affluent than average, meaning the retailer performs well in high-value categories such as fresh fish, chilled drinks and breakfast cereals.”
Iceland, Aldi and Lidl, where sales rose by 9.3%, 18.3% and 17.8% respectively, all grew ahead of the market. Aldi and Lidl achieved new record high market shares of 6.9% and 5.0%, while Waitrose’s share was stable at 5.2% despite a 3.1% increase in sales helped by strong growth in its ‘Waitrose 1’ range. At Co-op, sales rose by 2.6% while market share fell by 0.1 percentage points to 6.1%.