BOULDER, Colo., Oct. 6, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- After scouring the more than 1,200 exhibitor booths that filled the Baltimore Convention Center for Natural Products Expo East September 18-20, 2014, a team of editors and researchers from New Hope Natural Media identified the most important trends influencing natural, organic and healthy foods, beverages, dietary supplements, pet products, and personal care and household products today.
"The number of new companies, products and ingredient innovations debuting at Expo East was once again highly impressive this year," says Carlotta Mast, Senior Director of Content and Insights at New Hope Natural Media. "From innovative uses of plant-based proteins to the emergence of truly healthier nutritional profiles to new ways companies are providing ingredient traceability, the Expo East show floor was filled with some breakthrough product concepts that will make our food system and the consumer packaged goods world healthier, more sustainable and better aligned with shifting consumer preferences."
Product trends that were hot at this year's Expo East include:
Protein power: Protein was the star of this year's show, with food, beverage and supplement products featuring new, innovative protein sources and higher levels of protein per serving. From pea protein to cricket protein to products containing a mixture of both plant and animal protein, this and more was on display at Expo East.
Exhibiting brands aligned with this trend: Banza, Exo, Protings, Fit Patties, Jarrow Formulas Greek Yogurtein
Paleo on parade: The paleo trend continued to gain momentum at Expo East with the emergence of a new paleo certifications, and more packaged foods made with simple, whole food ingredients that follow the paleo doctrine of no grains, processed sugars, dairy or legumes.
Exhibiting brands aligned with this trend: Yawp!, Paleo Simplified, Epic, Certified Paleo
Mission matters: More and more natural products companies are starting with a philanthropic mission and building a suite of natural, organic and healthy products to support and grow that mission and create a positive social impact.
Exhibiting brands aligned with this trend: Coexist Coffee, Bill's Best, Sunshine Nut Co., Soapbox Soaps, Bambeco
Heritage to hipster: "Old school," traditional ingredients long known for their nutritional benefits such as apple cider vinegar and turmeric are popping up in new ways in foods, beverages and even dietary supplements.
Exhibiting brands aligned with this trend: Fire Cider, Switchel, Turmeric Alive
Coconut reimagined: Coconut has been a hot ingredient for several years now, but Expo East saw the debut of new healthy packaged products featuring coconut in imaginative, new ways that provide the health benefits of coconut—often in place of less-healthy ingredients.
Exhibiting brands aligned with this trend: EatingEvolved, Pure Wraps, Jackson's Honest
Probiotics pop: Probiotics also continue to be hot, showing up in new supplement formulations, cosmetics, greens powders, snacks and even fresh-pressed juice.
Exhibiting brands aligned with this trend: Garden of Flavor Pure Joy Juice, Natren Probiotics, Ohso Probiotic Chocolate
Clean, simple ingredients rule: Innovation also showed up as simplification, as the ingredient lists for products continue to get shorter and cleaner. Expo East featured many new food and beverage offerings that include only high-quality, whole food ingredients. The move to cleaner, food-based ingredients could also be seen in supplements and personal care.
Exhibiting brands aligned with this trend: Garden of Life, Neat Food, Solis Nutritional Blends
Vegan on the down low: The number of vegan foods and beverages displayed at Expo East was once again on the rise, but this year many vegan brands choose to emphasize the quality ingredients, delicious taste or mission of their products more so than their vegan positioning. The end result is a much more accessible offering for mainstream audiences.
Exhibiting brands aligned with this trend: Hampton Creek Foods, Hope Foods, Snaque, Treeline Treenut Cheese, Veggie Fries, Cook Simple, Fig Foods
Farm-to-face emerges: In the beauty category, we saw the emergence of more product lines featuring nutrient-rich, edible ingredients (many of them USDA Organic certified) such as acai, coconut, ancient grains, hemp and chia.
Exhibiting brands aligned with this trend: Balanced Guru, Shoosha, Buff Her House of Exfoliation
Back to the source: Expo East proved that "local" is for more than just the farmers market, with a growing number of exhibitors touting the sourcing stories behind their products. From ketchup made with only New Jersey-grown tomatoes to an entire supplement line featuring only ingredients grown in Nepal, the farm-to-field movement took on a more local flavor at this year's show.
Exhibiting brands aligned with this trend: Tangut, SugaVida, First Field, Omena Organics
"Innovation is clearly fueling continued growth in the natural, organic and healthy products industry, and walking the Expo East show floor this year certainly prompted as many questions as answers as to what will be the most important, long-lasting trends influencing the consumer products world in the near future," said Eric Pierce, Director of Strategy and Insights at New Hope Natural Media. "The NEXT Trend team is currently taking a quantitative look into the patterns that drive the latest innovations, formulations and product claims as a way to help companies find the best growth opportunities for the future."
To get more information on any brands included in the press release, please visit: http://www.expoeast.com/expoeast2014/Public/Exhibitors.aspx?ID=1049371
About New Hope Natural Media
New Hope Natural Media is the leading media resource and information provider for the natural, organic and healthy products industry, with print, in-person/event, and e-business products and services.
About NEXT Trend (www.nexttrend.com)
NEXT Trend is a business intelligence solution that offers proprietary pre-shelf natural products data, future trend insights, a predictive consumer segmentation, an innovation lab, custom research and extensive industry expertise that helps companies quickly recognize and act on emerging market opportunities in the natural products industry.
New Hope Natural Media
SOURCE New Hope Natural Media