Home Colors & Flavors Europe: Embrace trends to stay relevant, Givaudan tells FNI

Europe: Embrace trends to stay relevant, Givaudan tells FNI

Givaudan’s new FlavourVision edition reveals seven key consumer trends from crafted identities to risk aware and human connection.

These trends are brought to life with over 250 market examples including a fresh take on how health, identity, and en-joyment are translated into eating and drinking experiences, providing clarity and guidance for our customers as they ideate new products and concepts, wherever they are in the world.

Food News International asks Anne-Laurence Picard, regional consumer sensory insight head, Asia Pacific on how FlavourVision has benefited F&B companies, and how these companies can make sense of trends to effect growth.

FNI: How has FlavourVision contributed to the food and beverage (F&B) manufacturing industry over its 10 years of service?

Picard: Givaudan’s FlavourVision program has helped inspire and guide innovation opportunities for many fast moving consumer goods (FMCG) companies by providing a global, F&B relevant and intuitive-to-use macro trend framework.

FlavourVision has been used with our customers to identify new growth opportunities for categories and/or brands that product innovation can help unlock, and to provide inspiration for new product and flavor ideas by comparing and contrasting trends and their manifestations across different regions and markets.

In the past, FMCG companies in Asia Pacific were highly influenced by innovation originating in other regions.

Looking at how categories had developed and the nature of trends and innovation that had shaped them over time often informed and pre-empted what was to be expected in Asia.

The program was leveraged in Asia Pacific to track and make sense of what was happening in other geographies and to source inspiration from that.

Today, Asia is at the forefront of new trends and innovation that fundamentally disrupt and/or shape categories.

As such, the FlavourVision program, which has just been refreshed, will be used even more proactively in our region to track and understand how trends are manifesting themselves in Asia, and what challenges and opportunities these bring.

FNI: What trends that FlavourVision has highlighted proved to be important for the growth of the F&B sector?

Picard: The FlavourVision program is developed in partnership with an external consulting agency whose expertise is in identifying, monitoring and making sense of change in the world.

The macro trends that become the cornerstones of the program are carefully selected and crafted for their relevance and importance for the F&B sector.

All the seven macro trends covered in the program from Crafted Identities to Risk Aware play a key role in shaping F&B categories so it is difficult to single out any as more important than the others.

Trends associated with health and wellbeing (i.e. layered wellness and augmented self) have triggered fundamental changes in the formulation of products to deliver better for you solutions, and have increasingly augmented solutions that will further drive the viability and sustainability of entire categories and brands.

Highly aware and mindful consumers (i.e. human connection and risk aware) are demanding more from the products/brands that they buy, and the companies behind them, and are increasingly making purchase decisions that help drive their social and moral agenda.

This has encouraged manufacturers to revisit all aspects of their organizations, from sourcing ingredients, making products, retailing and promoting their brands, to redefining their social responsibilities and roles.

Trends associated with indulgence (DelightFULL) and the desire to seek new experiences have challenged all manufacturers to design full product or brand experiences that are more immersive, context relevant and continuously fresh to effectively attract, appeal and resonate with consumers faced with ever increasing and easily accessible choices.

Customization and personalization related trends (crafted identities and tailored expectations) have also taken on more importance and are now the standard that consumers expect.

These have challenged manufacturers to offer flexible and customizable solutions where possible to compete more effectively and retain valuable customers.

FNI: How can F&B plant managers suss out trends to consider versus fads?

Picard: Macro trends are anchored in well documented and quantifiable drivers and reasons to believe, and as such provide a robust compass and outlook on what will shape the future.

The way trends manifest themselves in the short-term is dynamic and at times more transient and can be made up of fads versus here-to-stay innovation.

No one has yet found a perfect way to predict these!

Standing still and/or avoiding taking a calculated risk means a high chance of losing relevance.

By regularly refreshing the core trend content of the program, and continuously tracking in-market manifestations around the world, FlavourVision is designed to provide early warning and inspirational signs to start conversations and spark new ideas that can turn into meaningful and breakthrough innovation.

FNI: How dependent are plant managers on trends?

Picard: No industry or manufacturer can remain relevant in a fast changing and interconnected environment without proactively and continuously looking at and embracing trends to shape their reason for being, their offer and go-to-market strategies.

This is especially acute in Asia where many of the disruptive trends are born and gaining speed, as they find flexible and adaptable environments in which to do so.

Customers often use Givaudan’s FlavourVision to validate and complement their own trend programs and build a well informed and future looking view of their consumer and market landscape.

FlavourVision goes a step beyond by helping to give deeper meaning to trends and by translating observed trends and developments into tangible ideas that stimulate dialogue and action to mitigate and take advantage of trends in F&B.