Courtney Steele Industry News
There has been a shift in the way consumers spend their money that has become more noticeable in 2018. Consumers are making more conscious choices and are more interested in the impact of products on themselves as well as others and the broader consequences and effect of what they choose to spend their money on.
On top of this, our lifestyles are busier than ever and convenience is becoming a more important factor. This is particularly true when it comes to meals. As consumers take more interest in health and nutrition, the demand for traditional, junk food ‘takeaways’ is falling and in its place we are seeing a proliferation of services specialising in restaurant delivery such as Deliveroo and Uber Eats. These services offer more choice and cater to everybody whether they are looking for delivery of a pizza or a matcha green tea latte.
Consumers looking for the latter of these two are leading a key trend for 2019. The desire for convenient yet healthy foods is growing and we are seeing the emergence of companies catering to these desires by introducing ‘quick and easy’ meal kits that include recipes and pre-cut ingredients. Supermarkets are getting in on the action too with Waitrose offering a similar service and other supermarkets upping their game in the convenience category by offering a larger selection of food-to-go options and nutritional ready meals. We are also seeing the introduction of more all-in-one meal replacements particularly within the vegan market.
This leads us on to another key trend. An influx of information on nutrition and animal welfare has led to consumers adopting a whole range of different diets from Vegan to Flexitarian. As a result, there is a marked increase in demand for plant-based alternatives and products. In 2019 we will see this demand for ‘gluten-free’, ‘dairy-free’ and ‘sugar-free’ food and drinks increase as people continue to adopt these ways of eating for their perceived health benefits.
It is not only the impact on themselves that is changing consumer behaviour. Consumers are becoming increasingly conscious of the negative impact of FMCG production and its byproducts on the environment. In 2018 we have become more aware of the affect of chemicals, plastics and packaging and what the manufacturing process of bringing food, drink, cosmetics and clothing to the market has on our planet. This has added to the appeal of plant-based and Vegan products and is pushing people even further toward ‘organic’ ‘ethically sourced’ and ‘local’ produce. Even those who are carnivorous are being given more choice with ‘grass-fed’ ‘free-range’ and ‘antibiotic-free’ varieties of meat, dairy and poultry becoming available. Now more than ever, it is important to consumers that they are making choices that are ethical and make a positive impact on animal welfare, sustainability and the environment as a whole.
Our final consumer trend for 2019 is born from the rise of the internet, social-media and the ‘sharing culture’ we now live in. Consumers, in particular Millenials, and those from Generation Z are sharing more and more of their lives through various social media platforms. This has led to a rise in demand for experiences over products. Industry leaders have realised that by playing into these consumers desires, not only are they encouraging the purchase of their product but by embracing this trend they also inspire ‘free’ marketing as people ‘share’ their product. Companies from Coca-Cola to Benefit Cosmetics and Mondelez’s Toblerone have all homed in on this marketing strategy and seen great success with consumers eager to get their hands on personalised products.
2019 is set to be an interesting year for the FMCG market with more creative and innovative products coming to market to satisfy the ever-growing list of consumers needs. We have an incredibly talented database of candidates with varying experience and a passion for meeting consumer needs. If you are looking to expand your team, please don’t hesitate to get in touch and see how we can help you meet your goals for the new year and if you are a candidate and would like us to help you find new opportunities, we are waiting to assist you, just Ask Alexander!