What is Convenience Today?
At the beginning of 2018, The NPD Group published a blog post predicting the top food and beverage trends for the coming year. One of the top disruptors? Convenience.
The NPD Group points out that convenience isn’t necessarily a new trend. From the 1980s through the 2000s, Baby Boomers relied heavily on convenience foods that offered time-saving meal solutions. The difference is that, today, convenience has taken on a different form, thanks largely to Millennials.
According to a recent USDA report, Millennials exhibit a higher preference for convenience than other generations, and contribute the most dollars to food categories that offer ready-to-eat options. Look no further than the rise in snacking for proof of this. Mintel says that while snack frequency is on the rise across the board, Millennials are the most likely to snack four or more times per day. Why? Despite their reputation as lazy and entitled, the Harvard Business Review says that Millennials are actually workaholics, less likely to use paid time off and more likely to be connected to their places of work 24/7 thanks to the internet and cell phones, which they’ve had since the day they entered the workforce. It’s no wonder that grab-and-go has replaced the at-home meal for this group.
What differentiates Millennials’ desire for convenience from that of the Boomers before them is their propensity for health attributes, especially as they enter parenthood. In fact, the Organic Trade Association says that Millennial parents are now the biggest group of organic buyers in the country. So, for this group especially, it’s not just about convenience, it’s also about health. Revealing the true shift in convenience eating is that fact that snacks with health-related claims are among the fastest growing snack launches.
In response, the market has answered with meal replacement bars, functional beverages, and more to meet demand. The good news is that National Enzyme Company is also evolving its offerings to meet the demands of on-the-go Millennials. In addition to offering stick and convenience packs, BioCore AminoTap® PS comes in many forms — powder, capsules, and tablets — for use in protein shakes or as easy supplementation. For the not-so-healthy eaters, BioCore® Optimum supports the digestion of proteins, fats, and starch to ensure nutrient availability. So whatever the audience — health conscious or fast food convenience-seekers — they never have to be without enzyme support.