Time to go Natural

The Lempert Report
July 26, 2013

Seems like the latest trend for food makers might be to make their foods look imperfect, in other words…natural.

Let’s look at some changes we’re seeing…At McDonald’s the new breakfast sandwich the “Egg White Delight” has egg whites in a loose shape rather than the round discs like the old egg sandwich. At Wendy’s their famously square hamburger now has wavy edges. And according to the Associated Press, Kraft Foods took more than two years to develop a process to make thick uneven slabs of Turkey look like your very own carved turkey leftovers! So what’s the idea behind this new trend? As the Associated Press notes, companies are responding to the simple idea that consumers eat with their eyes. As shoppers continue to focus on their health they are increasingly turning away from foods that look too processed. But data shows that consumers still love their packaged foods. According to market researcher Euromonitor international, the overall packaged food industry in North America grew 14 percent to $392.5 billion, and the fast food industry rose 13 percent to 225.6 billion. Companies are appealing to consumers’ wants; healthy and natural foods, but also their needs, fast and convenient food. Supermarkets can use this information to their advantage also, with their prepared foods. Healthy, natural food choices that are convenient and cost effective are appealing to shoppers and retailers should have these options available and easily accessible.