Specialty Food Magazine

FALL 2017

Specialty Food Magazine is the leading publication for retailers, manufacturers and foodservice professionals in the specialty food trade. It provides news, trends and business-building insights that help readers keep their businesses competitive.

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QUINOA-FLAX SEED QUINOA TOASTED COCONUT www.vivifysnacks.com SNACKS FOR EVERY MOMENT IN LIFE! ® FIND OUR OTHER COMBINATIONS! All Natural No artificial colors No artificial flavors Gluten Free Each Stick is Individually Wrapped trends & happenings Julie Gallagher, Mark Hamstra, Sara Kay, and Denise Shoukas are managing editor, contributor, content associate, and contributing editor, respectively, to Specialty Food Magazine. Consumer Interest in Wellness, Authenticity Drive Specialty Growth Specialty food sales are projected to grow at a 7.7 percent compound annual growth rate during the next five years, driven by consumers' interest in health and wellness, their desire for food "experiences," and their demand for transparency, according to presenters at the Summer Fancy Food Show. While the 7.7 percent growth rate marks a slow- down from the 8.7 percent pace of the past five years, it's still a healthy pace, and reflects an end to the deflation that has put a damper on growth in the last two years, said David Lockwood, director of Mintel Consulting, which issued the growth forecast. Each of the top four specialty food categories— cheese, meat/poultry/seafood, salty snacks, and non- ready-to-drink coffee—are forecast to grow at around 5.5 to 6 percent. Among the specialty food categories that Lockwood sees having strong potential to outpace that rate in the years ahead are salty snacks. At 18 percent of the total market for that category, specialty varieties have the potential to exhibit strong sales growth, driven by innovations around the use of ingredients such as ancient grains and pulses and "non-grain" formulations. Other categories Lockwood highlighted for their growth potential included specialty frozen desserts, bottled water, and wellness bars. The growth in specialty food sales is being driven in large part by consumers who are seeking to "trade up" for their everyday dining occasions, said Shelley Balanko, senior vice president at The Hartman Group. "Today's consumers want something better all of the time," she said. "They are expecting distinctive flavors, they want locally sourced foods, they want artisanal. "Even if consumers trade up just a couple of times a week, it is having a significant impact on the industry," said Balanko. She said Hartman Group research has found that 53 percent of consumers break from their normal eat- ing routine at least once a week. Of those, 38 percent are breaking from their normal routine for higher qual- ity, and 43 percent are breaking for variety. "The specialty space, both in foodservice and retail, is growing at several multiples faster than conventional, so this is clearly the exciting place to be for the indus- try," she said.—M.H. 20 ❘ SPECIALTY FOOD MAGAZINE specialtyfood.com

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