The Pulse team traveled to Boston for one of our favorite conferences, the AND’s annual Food and Nutrition Conference and Expo (FNCE). We loved catching up with friends and clients, as well as learning about new brands at the show. We noticed that, unlike years past, there was no one trend that dominated the expo. That said, here are some clear areas of focus for many healthy food brands:
Sustainability: We noticed more of a sustainability push among exhibitors this year. Consumers are increasingly conscious of their impact on the environment. Many brands are seeking to align their values with those of their consumers, sharing how their product is made and how they are working to produce sustainable packaged foods.
Food Sensitivities: Great news for those with food sensitivities—the market is growing, and the options keep getting better! Many brands at FNCE were boasting not about what was in their food, but what was not. Consumers will continue to see more products and labeling that make eating a free-from diet easier and more delicious.
Education: It’s no secret that we believe it’s important to educate influencers and consumers about healthy—it’s what we’ve been doing for the last 17 years. We loved seeing brands taking the opportunity to educate registered dietitians at FNCE. Companies were sampling and providing educational information for RDs—delivering a personal experience with the brand.
Solutions-Based Messaging: More than ever, healthy food brands are demonstrating how their products fit into a balanced, nutritious diet. Instead of focusing on their product alone, many brands took the opportunity to demonstrate how their healthy food pairs well with other foods to meet the needs of consumers. Whether that’s adding fruits and vegetables or incorporating foods into recipes, there was a clear, solutions-based focus that RDs can share with their patients and clients.
We really enjoyed our time in Boston, and can’t wait for Chicago next year!