Americans have a love-hate relationship with sugar. Currently, we eat an average of 17 teaspoons per day/per person, according to data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES). However, 80% of people said they are trying to limit or avoid sugar, according to the 2018 Food & Health Survey from the International Food Information Council (IFIC).
Why are consumers cutting down on sugar? The three most frequently cited reasons for choosing low- or no-sugar options were all related to weight and health. According to IFIC’s 2018 survey, almost half (49%) of people say they chose lower- or no-sugar options to lose or maintain weight. Globally, 42% say they made these choices because they were concerned about diabetes and 39% because they were concerned about a threat to their health.
But are consumers eating less sugar? Even though survey data shows consumers’ intent to reduce sugar, it doesn’t mean they are doing it. FMCG Gurus research showed 53% of consumers admit they have made plans to cut down on sugar but have not actually done so. This is because, ultimately, consumers will prioritize indulgence over health when it comes to moments of enjoyment.
Helping consumers indulge guilt-free not only can lead to greater sales but increase loyalty as brands effectively deliver products that taste great and have a solid nutritional profile. The following are five strategies brands should consider to achieve successful sugar reduction:
1. Prioritize categories associated with health
2. Don’t forget about calories
3. Natural sugars are good
4. Reduce sugar w+
5. Taste is king
To read this article in full, check out Food & Beverage Insider's sugar and sodium reduction digital magazine.
Geri Berdak is president of CloverQuest Group, whose focus is to help companies navigate the dynamic, changing food/wellness landscape and become leading brands in the space. Berdak has dedicated her career to the broader health and wellness category, leading marketing and product innovation efforts for Fortune 500 companies like PepsiCo, Monsanto, Solae/DuPont and for the Innovation Center for US Dairy, Kerry and Isagenix. A nutritionist and classically trained marketer, she partners with her clients to create brand positioning, identify which products to offer and determine the best way to take them to market so that they are highly consumer relevant, and strategically linked to the client’s brand image.