Raising the Bar for Deli Meats

The Lempert Report
April 06, 2016

We believe processed meats in the deli case will be the next to transform in a big way.

Both boomers and millennials are playing a large role in how food is being made, produced and branded. The latest to step up to the challenge? Deli meats! 

Deli meat suppliers are catering to Boomers' desire for flavored up meats and the millennial generations’ desire for new tastes and food experiences. With these two groups, bland meats just aren't making the cut. Innovations have already been going on with jerky, the introduction of spicy, smoked and teriyaki flavors and the use of turkey, salmon and bacon as base proteins have been hitting the market.  We believe processed meats in the deli case will be the next to transform in a big way.   Why? On a global scale – with North America representing about 40% of sales – processed meats are expected to grow to $799.1 million by 2018, up from $361.6 million, according to a new MarketsandMarkets forecast.  Protein is at the center of American diets, and ready-to-eat meats conveniently suit our lifestyles.  

In addition to this growth in processed meats, let's not forget the trend to eat tastier, healthier, kinder and more sustainably.  So besides bolder flavored meats, the market should expect to see varieties with better nutritional profiles and humanely raised options such as free-range chicken. Processed meats in the near future could also be: less processed; lack nitrates and nitrites; have less sodium, more spices and natural flavors such as wine.