FMCG Gurus has divided the top 10 trends for 2021 into three key themes: Health & Wellness, Safety & Assurance and Taste & Enjoyment.
Health and wellness
As with every year, health will be a major driver of consumer attitudes and innovation. Consumer concern over their health has particularly intensified over the past year, highlighting how vulnerable they are to illness and pushing them to re-evaluate their diets and lifestyles. The implications of this will manifest in consumer attitudes in several ways.
The Proactive Living trend will see consumers making changes to their diets with a focus on moderation and abstaining in order to make an instant health improvement, while Rediscovering Health means more attention will be placed on immunity over the long term.
Menu for Me covers the increasing consumer demand for personalised health solutions, such as nutrition genetic-testing, and, at the other end of the spectrum, Better for You, Not Best for You highlights how the healthiness of eating and drinking occasions can vary and what is the best way to respond through better-for-you NPDs that combine taste and nutrition.
With all aspects of health-related trends, the easier consumers are able to incorporate products into daily diets, the more likely they will continue to purchase in the longer term.
Safety and assurance
In 2021, FMCG Gurus’ predicts that consumers will continue to become more risk-averse and concerned about a variety of issues and their day-to-day and long-term implications.
Apprehensions around global supply chains, food safety and the longevity of a recession will drive the Safe and Secure trend, with consumers placing maximum emphasis on value and trust.
Worry about the environment will also drive The Earth is Clear trend. Consumers are becoming increasingly aware that the planet is at a tipping point and damage will impact the quality of life for both current and future generations. As such, they are ready to take on a far more proactive and collective approach in addressing these concerns.
This will see a continued growth of the flexitarian movement, highlighted in The Power of Plants. Indeed, concerns about health, sustainability and animal welfare is also expected to drive the plant-based movement. However, texture has been cited as a concern by consumers, especially towards new and alternative food types.
Finally, more validation of product claims will be needed, something explored in the Natural and Pure trend. Consumers will want more reassurance that products are real, authentic and nutritional.
Taste and enjoyment
Next year, consumers will continue to seek out new experiences.
This will drive the Taste First, Think Second trend, with consumers wanting their sensory perceptions to be tested with exotic products from around the world. It is also linked to feelings of self-expression and consumers wanting to demonstrate their good taste and sophistication.
These moments of indulgence will also be driven by the need for comfort and escapism from the pressures of everyday life, as demonstrated in the Eating out, Dining In trend. Consumers want to replicate this experience at home and will seek out products that will help facilitate this, especially those that will help them maximise their relationships with loved ones.
With all the promise and optimism that a new year traditionally brings, the reality is that the uncertainty from this year will continue into 2021 and beyond.
This means that is a more crucial than ever before that brands are seen to be reactive and understanding of consumers and their changing needs. Those that do will win in 2021.