“Countless exciting and important growth prospects”

The ice cream category is traditionally driven by luxury. But now we’re witnessing a surge in better options due to the launch of Halo Top’s first pioneering low-calorie, high-protein dessert in the United States.

Isn’t guilty ice cream too good and true? perhaps. However, prescriptions that allow consumers to enjoy acceptable treats provide a clear USP in the luxury category, where the main selling point is pleasure over health.

Plant-based ice cream falls into this bracket. Boosted by the overall rise in dairy alternatives, dairy-free ice creams typically benefit from health halos that span the entire plant-based sector.

Citing a European Consumer Opinion Survey, Yves Vantomme, Product Strategy Manager for Plant Nutrition at Granbia Nutritionals, said: “Plant-based milk, which achieved a remarkable growth of 12% in 2020, is gaining market share in this category and gaining momentum in the European market. One in three British consumers , Indicates that plant-based milk is perceived to be healthier than dairy milk, which continues the trend for plant-based beverages and snacks such as yogurt and ice cream after 2021. It suggests that. “

Plant-based ice cream has quadrupled in Western Europe between 2014 and 2018, according to data from Innova market researchers. In 2019, retail sales in this category will reach € 135 million in the region, with a CAGR of 12.6% by 2024. ..

Do you deliver positive nutrition through ice cream?

According to Torben Vilsgaard, Tetra Pak’s Ice Cream Academy Manager, the surge in consumer desire for ice cream makers to offer two and somewhat contradictory points is driven by the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. It was in our collective outlook.

“The increasing consumer demand for various plant-based ice creams is not solely due to the general increase in vegetarian and vegan diets. The COVID-19 pandemic also makes ice cream a luxury. From to healthy dessert options. “He told us.

“The pandemic encourages consumers to look for healthier foods to link gut health to improved immunity. In fact, according to Mintel data, 40% of Australian consumers Since its first outbreak, healthy diets have been a priority, while 35% of UK consumers are interested in ice creams that improve gut health. To take advantage of this trend. In addition, ice cream makers are trying to broaden their food image by announcing healthy pre / probiotics options. “

Experts claim that consumers want new regular ice cream after a pandemic / Pic: Getty Images We Are

Declan Rooney, Strategic Marketing Manager for Savory and Savory Alternatives at Ingredion EMEA, agrees that the COVID pandemic has impacted consumers seeking healthier alternatives. “As the pandemic continues, so does the increase in healthy eating to stay healthy. In the UK alone, 57% of consumers change their diet to be healthier and more sustainable. I’m considering that. “He said.

Rooney suggests that consumers need to be aware of the claims that consumers are most interested in for a particular category, as manufacturers are leveraging innovation to meet this need. “”While plant-based offers significant opportunities and optimal impacts, the formulation must provide a claim that reflects consumer concerns. All organic, functional benefits and nutritional claims are projected to grow, “he said. “Choosing the right claim is very important.”

Claims and Clean Labels: What Consumers Want from Vegan Ice Cream

So what kind of claims resonate? “For dairy alternatives, the top claims are” gluten-free, “” vegan, “and” lactose-free, “followed by” sugar-free “and” protein sources. ” Additional claims should lead to functional benefits of the product. Consumers are looking for claims that support certain health benefits such as “digestive health,” “vitamin / mineral fortification,” “calcium addition,” and “high source of protein.” “

An example of a better innovation is Danone’s Alpro 360 plant-based ice cream, which has a “no sweetener” claim on the front of the pack and contains only 360 calories per tab, to Spanish ice cream maker Ibense’s vegan. It ranges from gluten to lactose-free. SKUs claim to be low in calories, saturated fats, and sodium, but rich in oleic acid (related to cardiovascular health).

Looney also actively sees consumers replacing traditional milk proteins with plant-based options, but nevertheless needs to see a clean list of ingredients that are recognizable and free of artificial additives. I emphasized the focus.

“Ingredients are an important differentiator.”He suggested. “Consumers reading labels first look at the ingredient list and choose from products. This offers great opportunities as manufacturers have not yet fully utilized cleaner labels in these markets. Companies need to minimize the number of materials, make them visible to consumers, and aim to be aware of some of the potential pitfalls on the horizon. “

Getty Images David Malang Ice Cream

What do consumers want to deliver to plant-based ice cream? / Photo: Getty Images David Maran

From Camelina to Nori: Onboarding a New Protein Source

Innovators are looking for new sources of protein to expand their formulation toolkits to achieve a positive nutritional profile, and the sensory properties that people associate with ice cream, Vilsgaard observed.

“We are seeing more and more plant-based alternatives being established in more and more forms, from peas protein and oats to almonds and soybeans. Ice cream makers have a variety of milks, depending on their functional requirements. We are using alternatives. For example, according to Mintel data, the number of pea protein-based ice creams launched in 2019 was more than double that of the previous year. Globally, plant-based ice creams are the last five. We have doubled our market share in the year. “He said.

“Plant-based ice cream has countless exciting and important growth prospects.”

Vantomme agrees that protein diversification is one of the key factors supporting the innovation of plant-based ice cream, and consumers are highly interested in new and exciting protein choices. “Consumer demand for new and exciting plant-based protein products is driving a sophisticated science-based search for new protein sources. Ongoing research is on cruciferous oil seed-coated crops. Includes protein characterization from camelina and red algae such as seaweed and ogo. “

Seriously joy

Getty Images wondervisuals Ice Cream Happy Millennial Fun

At the end of the day, people eat ice cream because it gives them joy / Photo: GettyImages-wondervisuals

But better for you is not the direction in which all plant-based ice cream makers have decided to move forward. When Unilever rolled out the Vegan Magnum line, the company wasn’t shy and focused on luxury, claiming the product as a “luxury vegan treat for 100% joy.”

“From mastering the art of delicious vegan protein balls to being creative with the best vegan ice cream, treating yourself with vegan sweets no longer means saying goodbye to the tingling of your spine. “The company emphasizes in marketing materials.

This emphasizes the importance of continued luxury and joy in ice cream fixtures, whether vegan or dairy-based.

As new plant proteins come online, the key to lifespan is the functional properties they can provide. Consumers are keen to try plant-based ice cream options, but are willing to sacrifice taste to do so. A better message for you with ice cream can only be obtained so far without providing a taste.

“Ice cream innovators are increasingly recognizing that producing plant-based ice cream for a mainstream customer base means providing flavors and textures comparable to traditional ice cream.

“Viscosity is an important parameter in dairy ice cream production. So is plant-based frozen desserts. Optimal viscosity is essential not only for a smooth process, but also for the texture and mouthfeel of the product. This can present a unique challenge with respect to mixed viscosities, both low and overly high viscosities are observed. “Observed by Vilsgaard. “Countless exciting and important growth prospects”

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