News 04.06.2024

Need to Know

Introducing our new food and drink macrotrend, Cadbury uses nostalgia for good and why frozen cocktails are Gen Z’s favourites for the summer.

Discover LS:N Global’s new macrotrend: Functional Feasting

Dinner Drug, Greece

Global – What can you learn from our newly launched Food & Drink Futures 2024 report – and what can your business learn from our research?

Entitled Functional Feasting, the macrotrend explores how current challenges – inflation, environmental considerations, health fads and misinformation – are causing people to re-evaluate their day-to-day food decisions. In this landscape, consumers will increasingly refocus on what they can add to their diets rather than what they can remove. It is less about ‘free from’ than about ‘supplemented with’, a shift that will pave the way for a new generation of scientifically enhanced fortified foods and functional drinks.

The ‘little treats’ mindset is driven by the need for mood boosts despite reduced consumer spending and points to a growing need for indulgence. As we look ahead, these key consumer shifts will have relevance beyond the food and drink arena, as consumers seek indulgence minus the guilt narratives or moral values.

In the full report, you will find best-in-class case studies, expert interviews, market statistics and strategic implications you can apply to your business.

What the experts say

‘What’s on tomorrow’s menus? When tech hacking offers consumers the possibility to have their cake and eat it, they will seek solutions that skip the compromise’

Marta Indeka, senior foresight analyst, The Future Laboratory

Cadbury unveils nostalgic memory bar boxes for dementia patients

UK – Cadbury and Alzheimer’s Research UK (AR UK) have partnered with VCCP London to distribute 4,000 Memory Bar Chocolate Boxes to individuals with dementia and their families.

The boxes feature iconic Dairy Milk packaging dating from 1915 to the present, following requests from care homes and support groups for Cadbury archive packaging to evoke nostalgic memories among those living with Alzheimer’s as part of reminiscence therapy.

During Dementia Action Week in May, 1,000 Memory Bar Boxes were available for the public to apply for, while 2,000 were allocated to AR UK supporters affected by the disease. Each box comes with a digital download link, where carers can find classic posters and other Cadbury archive packaging. The confectionery manufacturer also pledged £200,000 ($255,600, €235,000) to AR UK to aid in dementia research.

In our Is Essentialism the Future of Branding? report, we examined how effective brand strategy is changing from a focus on relevance to exploring how brands can express values and contribute to society. By responding to organic demand for nostalgic packaging from carers and support groups, Cadbury’s campaign authentically showcases the brand’s close cultural ties to British history.

Memory Bar Boxes by Alzheimer’s Research UK and Cadbury, UK

Strategic opportunity

The best campaigns come from organically listening to your consumers. How is your brand monitoring requests and feedback to ensure you’re in touch with your customers?

Boycott X app encourages ethical consumerism

Retail, Carolina Carballo for The Future Laboratory Retail, Carolina Carballo for The Future Laboratory

France – Boycott X, a ground-breaking app launched in December 2023 by Chedy El Tabaa, has risen to the top of the free utilities app rankings on the French App Store, surpassing giants like Google.

The app’s slogan, ‘consume with conscience’, reflects its mission of empowering consumers to make ethical choices. As demonstrated in a video viewed 2.2m times on X (formerly Twitter), users can scan a product’s barcode and instantly learn if the manufacturer is involved in any boycotts related to human rights, animal rights or environmental violations. ‘L’Oréal is one of 12 groups sourcing palm oil, responsible for the destruction of tropical forests and land grabbing from local communities,’ reads one of the app’s informative entries.

Boycott X provides detailed summaries and reliable news articles for each listed boycott, allowing users to conduct their own research. Despite facing threats and buyout attempts, El Tabaa remains determined to expand into the American market. Boycott X is reshaping how consumers interact with brands, emphasising transparency and accountability.

In our macrotrend report, The Paralysis Paradox, we previously signalled how this disconnection between consumers’ beliefs and brands’ reluctance to be fully transparent about their methods will continue to grow and increasingly affect sales.

Strategic opportunity

Develop or obtain certifications for ethical practices. Highlight these certifications on product packaging and marketing materials to appeal to conscientious consumers

Stat: Frozen cocktails are Gen Z’s favourite summer drink

Sippers, UK

UK – In a recent survey by Paragon Brands, 24% of UK adults named alcoholic slushies as their top choice for summer beverages.

The survey of 2,000 adults found that one-third (34%) would choose a frozen cocktail over a traditional one, and 61% think a frozen version of their favourite cocktail would be more refreshing.

Frozen alcoholic beverages are especially popular among Gen Z, with 47% listing alcoholic slushies as their favourite summer drink and 74% saying they prefer frozen cocktails to regular versions.

Across the UK, alcoholic slushies are most popular in Brighton, where 79% of residents plan to consume a frozen alcoholic beverage this summer.

Gen Z are notoriously sober-curious, as we previously analysed in our Sober Bars report. But this survey suggests an opportunity for alcohol brands to tap into this market by offering frozen alternatives to traditional cocktails.

Strategic opportunity

Restaurants and bars should consider adding frozen alcoholic drinks to their menus this summer, with the added options of no- or low-alcohol variations to appeal to a wide audience

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