The world of fruits
The world of fruits
THE ROLE OF FRUITS
Already in our last trendblog “boosting your health with fruits and vegetables”, we highlighted the importance of a healthy diet, including enough fruits and vegetables, to consumers’ health.
Fruits are at the core of AGRANA Fruit’s business. We grow, source, and process a wide variety of fruits into high-quality solutions finding their way into yogurts, ice creams, and many other applications. But fruits are not just essential for us, they are for everybody!
Our proprietary consumer study conducted in 2021 confirms the high importance of fruits for consumers. We have heard statements like: “A life without fruit? I don’t even want to imagine that!” So, join us in this article to discover some of the highlights of consumers’ relationships with fruits.
Before we jump into the findings, you are probably curious how we set our study up. Here’s a quick summary:
ASSOCIATIONS WITH FRUITS
Can you guess what is the most widely known fruit as an ingredient in yogurt and ice cream across all five markets? Probably not a big surprise, it’s STRAWBERRY! There is only one exception: In water-based ice cream/sorbet in Germany, consumers are more aware of lemon than strawberry as a fruit flavor. So far so good, but what do consumers associate with strawberry?
Across all markets, strawberry is the fruit mostly widely associated with childhood memories, although the degree varies of course. In China, these associations are less explicit than in Germany for example. Other associations with strawberry for consumers are common, traditional but also sometimes boring.
You might wonder which fruits in turn have been associated with being more special, exciting, exclusive, or trendy? That varies across the markets and depends on the application, but overall fruits like mango, passionfruit or pineapple were more associated with being special in yogurt and ice cream. There are some specificities though for certain markets. Lemon, for example, has been especially associated with being trendy in spoonable yogurt in Germany and for drinkable yogurt in France. In the US, consumers perceive orange as the trendiest for drinkable yogurt whereas, in Russia, consumers see orange as exciting and adventurous for dairy-based ice cream.
There even exist nuances within one type of fruit. Peach as a fruit flavor in drinkable yogurt is perceived as common in China, but if you chose white peach, consumers start to perceive the product as much more special and trendier.
EXPECTATIONS TOWARDS FRUITS
There are significant differences in the consumer expectations towards fresh fruits compared to fruits as an ingredient. Criteria such as freshness, seasonality, local origin, and sustainability rank a lot higher when making a purchasing decision for fresh fruits compared to when fruit is used as an ingredient in another product such as yogurt or ice cream.
There is consumer interest however in finding out more about fruits as an ingredient. Especially in France and China, consumers are interested in the origin of fruits and the conditions they were grown in when they purchase yogurt and ice cream. In France in particular, consumers understand that yogurt or ice cream including locally sourced fruits is something of a premium. They expect these types of products to be up to 10% more expensive than standard ones with fruits from somewhere else.
TRYING SOMETHING NEW
Consumers are ready for more fruit innovation in yogurt and ice cream. More than two thirds of the respondents in our survey told us they are interested in trying new fruit flavors in yogurt and ice cream that they haven’t eaten before. Moreover, there is also substantial interest among consumers in combinations of fruit with other ingredients such as honey, botanicals, or brown flavors.
In Germany, consumers are especially interested in a fruit and brown flavor combination for ice cream whereas, in the US, consumers would like to have a drinkable yogurt with fruits and honey. In Russia, 71% of respondents are interested in a combination of fruits and brown flavor in a water-based ice cream. In China, 87% of respondents in our study expressed interest in a water-based ice cream with fruits and inclusions.
Overall, there are manifold opportunities for innovative launches in the yogurt and ice cream segments, be it with fruits alone, a combination of fruits, or by adding other ingredients like brown flavor or honey in addition to the fruits.
INTERESTED IN FINDING OUT MORE?
Curious to find out more about consumers’ relationships with fruits and the role of fruits in yogurt and ice cream applications? Check out our white paper featuring more in-depth insights. Download here.
Alternatively get in touch with us for a tailor-made presentation highlighting how you can tap into the world of fruits with your brand and position your products to reflect consumer wants and needs. We are the experts in the world of fruits and welcome the opportunity to co-create the next fruity consumer favorite together with you.