New research brings opportunities in healthy food

New research commissioned by Sensus has revealed that consumers in Europe harbor a strong interest in a healthier diet. The results of a recent consumer perception survey indicate an opportunity for food manufacturers to satisfy consumer needs by developing healthier products with clear benefits.

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Watch the video to have a quick view of the results.

The results show that many European consumers purchase ‘healthy food and drink products’ to address health concerns. The survey revealed that European consumers have a relatively high awareness of the need to reduce their dietary intake of sugar and fat. It also identified a growing demand for food- and drink products containing ‘natural’ (‘clean label’) ingredients.

This suggests strong potential for new healthier food- and drink products that are made from natural ingredients with proven effects on health, such as inulin, also called chicory root fiber. This food ingredient is a natural, prebiotic, functional fiber, which is sourced from natural chicory roots.

Chicory root fiber has ‘natural sweetness’ and can reduce the amount of added sugar and fat needed within food products. It also has significant, scientifically-proven health benefits. Chicory root fiber improves blood sugar management, boosts the fiber content of foods and promotes bowel health. Due to a low calorie content (half the calories of sugar), it supports weight loss and enhances the taste and texture of foods. More than 70% of the consumers surveyed expressed an interest in chicory root fiber after reading a short introduction about it.

While the survey indicated that many European consumers are generally skeptical about functional foods and find that many products are presented with claims that lack scientific proof, food- and drink manufacturers now have the opportunity to communicate a new health claim on products made with chicory root fiber, basis on new scientific evidence. In 2016 the European Commission confirmed that chicory root fiber contributes to better blood glucose management. Food manufacturers now have the opportunity to communicate general health-related claims, such as “Keeping your blood sugar low” or “More balanced blood glucose rise”.

“Growing interest in chicory root fiber indicates an opportunity for manufacturers to develop an even wider range of products for European citizens, who are trying to improve their diet,” added Jolanda Vermulst, Manager Market Intelligence at Sensus. “There is still a great deal of potential for the introduction of new healthy food and drink products, with 43% of those surveyed agreed with the statement that there are not enough popular food products available with health benefits.”


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