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GNT recommends clean label strategies

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GNT recommends clean label strategies

February 23
10:36 2016

natural_coloursNatural colour solutions can provide food and beverage manufacturers with a major edge over their competitors, according to GNT who says that, by removing artificial and additive colours, manufacturers can meet the demands of 54% of consumers worldwide who want their food and drinks to be made with natural colour ingredients only.

Alongside this, communicating their usage clearly on the label becomes increasingly important, the company says, as 67 % of consumers consider easy to understand ingredient information essential when choosing groceries. Credible front of pack-claims give producers the potential to increase brand preference even when a price increase is applied.

The findings come from a global consumer study which has been conducted by market research institute TNS and the GNT Group. 5,000 people from ten countries in Asia, the Americas and Europe were interviewed.

A crucial requirement for the success of a product is the right choice of claim, says GNT: only those which are perceived as credible lead to a stronger purchase intention. In order to shed light on this issue, the effect of different claims which promote the use of all-natural solutions such as colouring foods has been examined in more detail: both the claims “with natural colours“ and “coloured with fruit and vegetables“ are perceived as credible by more than 75 %. The claim “coloured with fruit and vegetables” conveys positive product characteristics such as “is healthy”, “is safe” or “is 100 % naturally produced” to more than two thirds of consumers.

Which claim is preferable also depends on the product category. For food and beverages perceived as generally less natural, such as sweets or soft drinks, the claim “coloured with fruit and vegetables“ is most suitable to uplift brand preference because it provides a clearly distinguishing message for consumers. In food categories with a more natural image, like yoghurt, the claim “free from artificial colourants” is perceived equally well.

“It is highly important for food manufacturers to understand consumers’ reaction to labelling in order to choose the right claim for their products,” said Dr. Hendrik Hoeck, Managing Director of the GNT Group. “With our survey, we can provide this information for different countries, consumer groups and product categories”,

When it comes to using colouring ingredients and corresponding claims, manufacturers have to bear in mind that shoppers have a clear idea of how they define natural colour solutions. 42 % expect natural food colourings to only originate from edible raw material such as fruit and vegetables. Only 21 % perceive colours made from substances such as insects or minerals to be truly natural.

“The trust of consumers should not be undermined by communicating a product to be all-natural but not satisfying the precise expectations on ingredients”, said Hoeck. “Colouring foods meet the demands of today’s consumers to the fullest extent as they are made exclusively from edible raw materials. At the same time, they can be applied to nearly every application and match additive colours in terms of diversity, stability, shelf life and colour brilliance.”

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