Canadians seek healthier options in baked goods

27 Aug 2019

Consumer Insights
Taste Tomorrow

Today, consumers want to live a healthy life more than ever before. Consumers’ expectations with regard to health continue to evolve, but food always plays an important role in a healthy lifestyle. In 2019 it’s no longer just about calorie intake and getting rid of ‘bad’ ingredients like fat, sugar or salt. Nutritional factors are becoming more important and most consumers want their food to be good for them and the planet.

The data comes from a consumer survey, named Taste Tomorrow, which was conducted in 40 countries to gather data from over 17,000 consumers, including 400 Canadians. The study was first conducted in 2011 and now, eight years later, the results of this third edition has identified nine key worldwide trends on the baked goods industry. One of these trends is ‘health’.

Healthy Food

What is a healthy product, according to consumers? In the 2015 survey, this was mainly about reducing our intake of certain ingredients: less sugar, less fat, less salt. Today, the concept of healthiness has undergone a tremendous evolution. It is now about simultaneously eradicating undesirable ingredients and making use of ingredients that contribute to better health, like fibres, proteins and whole grains. For Canada specifically, 73% of the consumers say that healthy baked goods are about removing ingredients and 68% of the Canadians also think it is about adding more wholesome ingredients. 

Good for the Planet and Me

The trend towards more healthy food is closely connected to the consumer demand for an Ethical Lifestyle: a lifestyle that is not only good for themselves, but also for the planet, the people and future generations. The ‘Taste Tomorrow’ survey revealed that 65% of the Canadian consumers believe that a plant-based diet has a positive impact on solving the food shortage issue.  But the plant-based lifestyle is about more than just the environment: it’s also seen as good for me. Consumers think that plant-based products are not only less harmful for the resources of Mother Earth (environmental sustainability); 34% of the Canadians also think it has a positive impact on their health. Almost one out of 3 Canadian consumers (30%) already buys plant-based or vegetarian food on a weekly basis. At global level, consumers believe they will buy more such food in the future.

Plant-based cupcake. Almost one out of 3 Canadian consumers (30%) already buys plant-based or vegetarian food on a weekly basis.

Health Should Never Compromise on Taste

While health is of growing importance for consumers worldwide, it should never compromise on taste. Consumers want products that are tasty as well as healthy. Bread products that are considered both tasty and healthy contain whole wheat flour, fibre, grains and seeds. These are recognized by consumers as power ingredients that make products healthier and tastier at the same time. For example, 29% of the Canadian consumers look at the type of grains and seeds when buying bread. Sourdough bread is also seen as tasty, healthy and natural. And especially in Canada, we have seen an increased interest in sourdough bread for those various reasons.

With regard to patisserie, nuts, fibre, vegetables and fruit fillings are considered to be power ingredients. Healthy and tasty ingredients in chocolate products are cocoa, followed by fibre, nuts, super fruits, floral extracts, fruit fillings and seeds. These are all products that consumers recognize as being 100% natural and thereby full of goodness.

Key Take-aways from the ‘Health’ Trend

To summarize the health trend, we can state that healthy food is about consumers expecting more of the good and less of the bad. They look for fewer calories and less fat, sugar and salt. At the same time, they want products with more power ingredients like fibre, wholegrains and proteins. It’s important to highlight these so-called power ingredients that are considered to be both healthy and tasty. Because no matter how important health is, it should never compromise the taste of a product.

Canadian consumers are looking for healthier options when it comes to buying baked goods.

About  Taste Tomorrow, it’s a consumer survey dedicated to bakery, patisserie and chocolate. It’s conducted by Puratos every three years in 40 countries to gather data from over 17,000 consumers, including 400 Canadian consumers. The results? Fresh insights on health, taste, convenience, experience, digital trends and more, to stimulate innovation in the bakery, patisserie and chocolate sectors. The study was first conducted in 2011 and now, eight years later, the results of this third edition reveal nine key worldwide trends, with ‘taste’ being the most important.

Want to learn more?

Please contact your Puratos Sales representative if you would like to find out more about the Taste Tomorrow trends in Canada. 

This article is written by Liesbet Vandepoel, Marketing Director, Puratos Canada. Liesbet has over 15 years of expertise in marketing in Europe and North America and has developed a true passion for food as well as a thorough understanding of the people who consume it. In the coming months, she will share with you the different trends coming from the Taste Tomorrow study with a specific focus on Canada.