In 2023, one word is set to take over consumer focus in the food and beverage market, according to the research group Innova Market Insights: "redefining value."
In light of what experts say is an impending recession sure to emerge at the beginning of 2023, consumer interests have shifted. Value is at the forefront of shoppers' minds thanks to rising inflation, a tight labor market, and supply chain issues. Innova foresees that consumers will stick to bulk buying that cuts down on costs, shop less often for fun, and purchase fewer luxury items.
A poll by Ipsos found that the value trend is already in full swing. More than 2,000 respondents told researchers that they're cutting back on impulse buys when it comes to food and beverages. Around 47% of those polled buy food and beverages from cheaper brands, and another 33% purchase less altogether.
According to research, consumption will remain stable, but patterns may shift regarding how those consumer dollars are allocated. Additionally, consumers may revert to pandemic buying habits such as ordering in or buying groceries rather than dining out. According to Lu Ann Williams, the Global Insights Director at Innova Market Insights, companies should focus on "quality, trust, and confidence via their product formulations" to keep up with this value-based trend.
Innova's research found that food and beverage trends will also lean towards affordable nutrition, generational influences, and plant-based foods. While consumers will have less money to spend on food, they'll still want what many consider to be healthier options, including vegan or vegetarian options such as plant-based meat. Members of Generation Z and Millennials will drive these trends, looking for nutritional foods with exciting and fun flavors.
Sustainability in terms of packaging, food production, and a company's carbon footprint also remains a chief concern for younger consumers — it was Innova's top trend of 2022.