Confectionery brands should focus on healthy yet exciting products to re-engage with adventurous consumers

A growing number of consumers are turning towards indulgent products that offer a unique and highly flavorable experience. To cater to this demand, brands should take risks to explore new boundaries and markets in order to stand out in the competition, according to GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company.

The company’s report, ‘Top Trends in Chocolate, Confectionery, and Desserts 2019’, states that healthy, but exciting, innovation is key to overcoming the problems facing the chocolate, confectionery and dessert industry.

Higher quality in chocolate, confectionery and desserts is a popular requirement for all generations; however, millennials are more willing to indulge in new and novel consumption experiences with 33% of millennials always trying new or different varieties of chocolate, confectionery and dessert products, compared to 21% of the silent generation, according to GlobalData’s 2018 Q3 global consumer survey.

Brands are exploring new textures for the first time in decades to appeal to adventurous consumers. However, as competition in the sector rises, the stakes are higher for brands to create something new and stand out.

Ramsey Baghdadi, Consumer Analyst at GlobalData, comments: “It is clear that age plays an important role in the development and evolution of new and emerging trends, especially among younger age cohorts. Millennials appear to be the most dominant generation, consuming significantly more premium products than other generations. Brands need to think creatively and emphasise new textures to boost an enjoyable brand image for adventurous consumers and meet new consumer demands of uniqueness.”

Sensory properties play a pivotal role in food consumption choices, with consumers seeking freshness, quality, and enticing flavors. Although the majority of consumers find comfort in familiar flavors, there is also willingness among more curious consumers to experiment, creating demand for more exotic flavors, and cuisines. According to GlobalData’s Q3 2018 global consumer survey, 50% of consumers globally prefer trying new food and drink products over new experiences.

Baghdadi adds: “Consumer demand for more associations to natural ingredients has increased recently which has led to brands to experiment with natural flavors. Experiential factors are now just as important as new products, as demand for sensory experience has grown.”

Global leading chocolate and confectionery brands that are expanding to new markets are finding success in localizing their products. For example, Kit Kat continues to release exclusive Japanese flavors such as volcanic and ruby to the locals. Furthermore, Mars announced that they are exploring new flavors for their line of confectionery to release in India to compliment local tastes.

Baghdadi adds: “Globalisation is a key topic for manufacturers in chocolate, confectionery and desserts as it is a challenge to address local tastes. We can expect to see competitors start to mirror the strategies used by Kit Kat and Mars.”

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