With the world’s population expected to exceed 9 billion by 2050, farmers and dairy processors have been on the hunt for solutions to feed so many people. One realization is that the same cultures and enzymes used to transform milk into cheese and yogurt can be warriors against waste.
Consumers tend to see foods with added ingredients as ‘processed.’ Yet they also consider fortified foods ‘worthwhile.’ One survey finds that consumers trust ‘functional foods.’ So what’s a dairy processor to do?
Since 1998, the International Food Information Council has taken Americans’ temperature on the topic of functional foods and beverages. The IFIC assesses their attitudes and awareness and gives the industry an idea of precisely what consumers look for when they shop for products that promise benefits beyond basic nutrition.
Dairy processors are adding spicy peppers, herbs and other botanical ingredients to dairy foods. What’s going on? Our panel says consumers’ desire for more flavor, more stimulation and more experience is behind the trend.
If there’s a universal truth we can all count on, it’s that America’s three favorite ice-cream flavors will always be vanilla, chocolate and strawberry. Right? Wrong. Per the International Dairy Foods Association, Washington, D.C., our top three picks last year were vanilla, chocolate and butter pecan.
One of the most attention-grabbing features of the 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans is the conclusion that added sugars should contribute less than 10% of the calories a person takes in on a typical day. Not to be outdone, the Food and Drug Administration proposed a dedicated “added sugars” line on a soon-to-be-updated Nutrition Facts panel.