Convenient packaging behind increased spinach consumption
An accelerated pace of life drives an ongoing trend towards convenience combined with a growing demand for healthy options. This growing demand for convenience has had a positive effect on the fast food service industry as more consumers lack the time to prepare meals at home. With long working hours, there are an increasing number of consumers who are busy and perceive that they have less time for cooking and eating food at home. Today’s consumers are also less able to cook food at home or prepare meals from scratch ingredients. The fruit & vegetable sector, in this regard, is well positioned to take advantage of these trends, adjusting to an opportunity for quick and ready meals for both on-the-go as well as at-home consumption.
Convenience and packaging innovations provide broad opportunities for fresh and minimally processed vegetable manufacturers. There is no doubt that introduction of pre-washed, pre-cut or pre-cooked vegetables has made the product more convenient for the consumer and contributed to increased sales in recent years. Product innovation that allows vegetables to have shelf stability is extending beyond lettuce to pre-cut onions, peppers, and other vegetables. It has also extended to spinach, which resulted in a significant increase of per capita consumption of spinach in recent years. In the future, for example, all-in-one salad kits or vegetables will be appealing to many consumers that lack the time to prepare foods.