How is health driving purchasing decisions?

A survey of almost 2,050 supermarket shoppers from analytics company Future Thinking looked at consumer buying and eating habits.

15 October 2019
free-fromhealthplant-basedstatisticssugar
image credit: Getty Images

  • One in five consumers are eating less meat in 2019 compared to last year.
  • The main reasons for reducing meat included health benefits (64%), concerns for animal welfare (48%) and environmental concerns (37%).
  • An additional 15% had said they had cut down because meat comes in plastic packaging.
  • Three in 10 surveyed said they also avoid certain food groups like wheat, gluten or soy, largely due to lifestyle choices rather than allergens.
  • More than a third of respondents believe free-from products are healthier than their conventional counterparts, particularly millennials.
  • 61% of people preferred to eat food made from scratch with fresh ingredients.
  • 85% of respondents understood the distinction between good and bad fats.
  • 69% of parents were worried about the impact of sugar on their children’s teeth, rather than as a risk factor for diabetes or weight gain.
  • 67% felt healthy food was more expensive then unhealthy foods. Nearly half of those surveyed said if healthy food was cheaper they would be more inclined to improve their eating habits. Consumers see supermarkets as predominantly responsible for encouraging healthy eating, followed by professionals and family members.

 

“Consumers are clearly taking steps to be healthier, but they are just not concerned about fat and sugar now,” said Future Thinking’s senior research director Catherine Elms. “Recognition of a healthy diet as more holistic has significantly increased and they want to know what’s included in their food as much as they want to know what it doesn’t include. They also expect responsible marketing and are mindful of the environment when making food choices.”

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