Paleo diet benefits natural ingredients

Paleo diet benefits natural ingredients

The paleo diet has been around for some years but has grown to achieve almost cult status, exploiting rising interest in returning to the eating habits of our ancestors, perceived to be simpler and more natural, according to Innova Market Insights.

Interpretations and definitions of the diet vary considerably, but the basic idea is to take eating back to the way our ancestors would have eaten in the Stone Age. This means prior to agriculture and farming, with a diet of lean meat, nut and fruit and vegetables, with no access to grains, legumes, dairy products and foods high in refined sugar.

Lu Ann Williams, director of innovation at Innova Market Insights, says, “Natural ingredients are increasingly in demand and this has resulted in the arrival of new options in some instances and the revival and updating of some established products in others.

“Interest in naturally nutritious ingredients and a return to basics has led to increasing consumption of ingredients such as ancient grains and green foods. It has also led to a surge in interest in alternative diets and eating habits, bringing awareness of the paleo diet to a much wider range of consumers.”

When looking at use of the word ‘paleo’ in launch activity tracked by Innova Market Insights, a huge surge has been seen over the past five years, from single figures in 2010 to over 300 in the 12 months to the end of September 2015. Although this remains very small in terms of global launch activity totals, it is nearly three times the number recorded in the previous 12 month period.

Launch activity has been fairly fragmented in terms of product categories, although cereals, bakery products and snacks account for a combined 56% share. Sports nutrition products take fourth place, ahead of dairy soft drinks.

Products are increasingly being marketed as paleo friendly and some high profile lines now also feature ‘paleo’ in the product name or brand.

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