The food industry as we know it is about the see a seismic shift. An incredible $18 billion market share has been lost by the leading 25 food and beverage companies in the U.S. over the last five years, according to Fortune.
Millennials are driving a new revolution in the way Americans purchase, consume, and devote their loyalty to food and beverage brands, influencing the growth and success of mid-market and major companies alike. A desire for transparency, coupled with an increased reliance on technology, is disrupting the industry, and brands must be willing to adapt to stay afloat and appeal to this crucial demographic. With the use of smartphones, consumers now have an incredible tool at their disposal 24/7 that allows them to make more educated decisions about the food and beverages they purchase right on the spot. Apps and the Web make it easier for shoppers to carry around an abundance of information about the products they buy, and it’s now each brand’s job to dive deep into this information and think about how it is affecting consumer perception of their goods.
There is huge potential for mid-market companies to capitalize on this shift by adopting transparent, sustainable methods of marketing and presenting their goods. Sticking with tradition isn’t going to cut it anymore – it’s time for companies to prove themselves as innovative leaders in their industries by thinking fresh and constantly tweaking their product packaging to drive their sustainable and transparent values home. That isn’t to say established brands have to lose their identity and recognizable factor – some of the top companies are wisely retooling their food and beverage containers to incorporate their company’s classic look with more modern and functional flexible packaging.
The food industry can also directly affect the way customers see and experience their products by leading education efforts in strategic ways. Consumers have a right to know what ingredients are in the foods they buy, what exactly goes into its production, and where the food is produced and grown. Health is being redefined – people aren’t cutting back on fat, or counting calories and carbs like they used to. It’s now all about finding products that clearly state the natural, organic properties of their ingredients right on the label.
This is the first stage of the education process – coupled with natural-looking, eco friendly packaging, like kraft stand up pouches, brands can maintain a consistent image focused on health and wellness.
We’ve learned that a majority of consumers views smaller businesses as more wholesome and nutritious than mysterious big brands they can’t interact with on a personal level. Small brands are embracing packaging like kraft stand up pouches with window because they give off a natural, DIY look while giving customers a peek inside the pouch to see exactly what the product looks like. Larger companies can earn consumer trust and build transparency by incorporating this type of inventive, eco-friendly packaging into their repertoire in order to stay competitive with smaller brands and earn the trust and loyalty of their consumer base.
Campbell Soup Co. CEO Denise Morrison says the megabrand is working to be “the biggest small company” by acquiring several organic startups. Some experts say the future of the food industry is in small businesses’ hands because larger manufacturers aren’t as able or willing to adapt to the latest trends and innovations.
Retailers, too, are looking to food and beverage companies to deliver the most inventive, future-forward products to draw millennial consumers to their stores. Taking a page from smaller businesses’ books, and listening to younger, tech-savvy shoppers, will help mid-market and megabrands adapt to changing times and keep up during this drastic shift in consumer behavior.
The way your product is presented can make all the difference – customers are mobile, active, and make decisions quicker than ever before. That’s why using packaging like kraft stand up zipper pouch bags, which are produced with scientifically developed laminated layers that allow the bag to stand upright on shelves, can grab consumers’ attention fast. It communicates the feel of a small business people can trust, while using natural structural elements that highlight a brand’s commitment to sustainability, wellness, and transparency.