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Back to basics: from consumers the demand for natural, traditional and functional foods

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According to a recent report by Dr Morgaine Gaye, a food futurologist, the desire for a simpler life emerges among consumers. The pandemic has resulted in a growing desire to reconnect with nature and this, combined with the realization that we can ‘live with less’ – many of us have had to adapt for a long time in confined spaces during the lockdown – is turning into a returning trend. to the origins, to a more natural lifestyle. “We feel a constant desire to connect with nature. Eating more natural foods, creating new foods and drinks starting from ancient ingredients: all this will fit into the current trend for hand-made products, the low-fi living. Trends that are also found in the colors and dyes of food and fabrics, which are increasingly natural and of plant origin … is the back to basics. It’s not just a temporary goal, it’s a global trend, ”commented Dr. Gaye. In this trend, almonds can play a key role as a natural and functional food: with 14 different formats and a rich nutritional profile, they are the ideal for responding to these emerging needs. Essentiality That of simplicity is the way that consumers are following for a “return to origins” that passes from giving up processed and unidentifiable foods in favor of natural ones and considered essential. Dr. Gaye stresses that traditional foods are ideal to respond to this need for essentiality since “basic products and traditional ingredients give us a sense of security and stability, something we really need in recent years.” “Both food and packaging are already changing and responding to this trend with simplified functionality ”, emphasizes Dr Gaye. “We are looking for multipurpose packs, foods that work well for breakfast, lunch and dinner and recipes with 3 ingredients. We are increasingly attracted to foods with fewer ingredients and less processing “. Dariela Roffe-Rackind, Director Europe & Global Public Relations of the Almond Board of California, points out that almonds have the ideal qualities to respond to this trend: “The natural, plant-based and shelf-life characteristics of almonds make them suitable for responding to this trend. to this desire to return to basics. With 14 different formats, including whole, sliced, flakes, chopped and in the form of milk, butter, flour, or oil, developers can count on the flexibility to use almonds in the most suitable, using fewer ingredients and with less need for processing “. Less but better This desire for simplicity also manifests itself in lifestyles that are increasingly oriented towards minimalism, stripped of the non-essential. With this in mind, multifunctional products that allow consumers to simplify their lives are essential. According to Gaye, “Natural and minimally processed foods are the best things we can put in and on our bodies. The gut-brain connection is gaining more and more attention and relevance and consumers are looking for foods they can rely on, made with ingredients. simple, home pantry, clearly listed on the labels. “Roffe-Rackind added:” Almonds can also support producers in responding to the demand for functional foods. With a rich nutritional profile, they are one of the most studied foods. Over 200 published surveys showing their benefits for heart health, diabetes management, weight and skin health, just to name a few, almonds can lend a healthy profile to products that can help consumers live a simple lifestyle, while ensuring the nutrients you need to stay healthy. ”The Power of Simplicity Gaye and she also points out that “this underlying tension towards the ‘minus’ is partly linked to a desire for greater freedom, for fewer restrictions. Our aspirations are changing, they are shifting from the desire to ‘have’ and accumulate, to wanting to be free from the effort of choosing “, and concludes:” the desire for simplicity, the desire to have less but to have better, will always be more evident in all aspects of our life. “Faced with the growing desire to live a simpler life, almonds are one of the few natural ingredients that meet the diverse needs of product developers, says Roffe-Rackind.” With the evolving needs of consumers after the pandemic, who see the desire for simplicity increasingly in the foreground, producers can count on the taste and unique texture of almonds, which make them usable in many different areas, ensuring those qualities that can help them to meet the most varied needs. It will certainly be exciting to see how these trends come to life in the development of new products “. For food producers, innova Looking to the future is imperative to ensure success. With consumers aspiring to a return to basics, natural, nutrient-rich ingredients like almonds are key to adding value to new product development.

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