Description

“Natural and organic foods and drinks continue to grow in popularity. COVID-19 has bolstered the demand for natural and/or organic foods and drinks as health becomes a greater focus for many. In the years to come the natural/organic space will likely continue to expand and become more mainstream as health remains central and other considerations, such as the environment, become more prominent.”

-Joel Gregoire, Associate Director Food & Drink

Key issues covered in this Report

  • The impact of COVID-19 on consumer behaviour and the natural/organic market.
  • Differences in perceptions of and attitudes towards natural/organic foods and drinks.
  • Perceived benefits and detriments of eating and drinking natural/organic foods and drinks.
  • Who is more and less open to products in this space.

Table of Contents

  1. Overview

    • What you need to know
      • Key issues covered in this Report
        • Definition
          • Market context
            • COVID-19: Canadian context
            • Executive Summary

                • Top takeaways
                  • Market overview
                    • Impact of COVID-19 on natural and organic foods and drinks
                      • Figure 1: Short, medium and long-term impact of COVID-19 on natural/organic foods/drinks, March 2021
                    • Opportunities
                      • Organic/natural food and drinks are well positioned as Canadians focus more on their health
                        • As safety takes centre stage, natural/organic foods help bring peace of mind
                          • Organics has a role as concern over climate change escalates
                            • Challenges
                              • Communicating value for money is key for natural/organics
                                • Many Canadians remain confused around the benefits of natural/organic products
                                  • Smaller companies are more trustworthy for many Canadians
                                  • The Market – Key Takeaways

                                    • COVID-19 widens the divide between the ‘haves’ and ‘have nots’
                                      • Canadians have more information at hand, but are they more informed?
                                        • Climate change will dominate the discussion over the next decade and beyond
                                        • Market Factors

                                          • COVID-19 widens the divide between the ‘haves’ and ‘have nots’
                                            • Canadians have more information at hand, but are they more informed?
                                              • Climate change will dominate the discussion over the next decade and beyond
                                                • Figure 2: Sources of greenhouse gas emissions in Canada, 2018
                                                • Figure 3: Maple Leaf Foods is Carbon Neutral Now, November 2019
                                                • Figure 4: Not Just Little Things, February 2020
                                            • Companies and Brands – Key Takeaways

                                              • Natural/organic foods is an alternative to plant-based foods
                                                • 2020 saw significant growth in natural and organic food and drink launches
                                                  • Private label’s push into organics helps convey value
                                                  • Competitive Strategies

                                                    • Private label’s push into organics helps convey value
                                                      • Figure 5: Compliments Organic Banana Apple Baby Food Puree (Canada), August 2020
                                                      • Figure 6: Compliments Organic 100% Pure Amber Maple Syrup (Canada), November 2020
                                                      • Figure 7: Great Value Organic Free Range Large Size Brown Eggs (Canada), August 2020
                                                      • Figure 8: Great Value Organic Rotini Pasta (Canada), August 2020
                                                      • Figure 9: PC Organics Dark Chocolate Covered Coconut Clusters (Canada), October 2020
                                                      • Figure 10: PC Organics Pure Honey (Canada), December 2019
                                                      • Figure 11: PC Organics Ground Turmeric (Canada), January 2020
                                                    • 2020 saw significant growth in natural and organic food and drink product launches
                                                      • Figure 12: Maple Leaf Natural Sliced Turkey (Canada), January 2021
                                                      • Figure 13: Robin Hood Organic All Purpose Flour (Canada), December 2020
                                                      • Figure 14: Heinz 57 Varieties Tomato Ketchup (Canada), June 2020
                                                      • Figure 15: Honey Stinger Naturally Flavored Honey Waffle (US), February 2021
                                                      • Figure 16: Solely Whole Organic Spaghetti Squash (US), February 2021
                                                      • Figure 17: Annie’s Homegrown Honey Bunny Grahams (US), April 2018
                                                      • Figure 18: Nature’s Promise Kids Organic Stars Fruit Snacks (US), February 2021
                                                      • Figure 19: No Evil Foods Pit Boss Pulled ‘Pork’ BBQ (US), May 2019
                                                      • Figure 20: Greenhouse Ketolatté Almond Butter Coffee (Canada), March 2021
                                                      • Figure 21: Let There Be Hemp Original Grain-Free Hemp Chips (US), February 2021
                                                    • Sobeys’ acquisition of Farm Boy is a big bet on ‘natural’
                                                      • Figure 22: Farm Boy. It’s All About the Food., August 2020
                                                  • Market Opportunities

                                                    • Natural/organic foods are an alternative to plant-based foods
                                                      • Figure 23: Correspondence analysis – Description of natural/organic, February 2018
                                                    • The pandemic incentivizes healthier (safer) living
                                                      • Organic is a means to promote ethics and the environment
                                                      • The Consumer – Key Takeaways

                                                        • Natural products’ popularity exceeds organic’s
                                                          • Natural and organic foods’ popularity grows during COVID-19
                                                            • Supermarkets are where most Canadians shop for natural/organic products
                                                              • Health and the environment are central to the value of natural/organic products
                                                                • Keep it simple!
                                                                  • Not all perceptions of natural/organic foods are positive
                                                                  • Natural/Organic Purchase Behaviours

                                                                    • Natural products’ popularity exceeds organic’s
                                                                      • Figure 24: Types of food or beverages typically purchased, February 2021
                                                                    • Demographics’ influence on usage can inform more effective targeting
                                                                      • Figure 25: Types of food or beverages typically purchased, 18-44s vs over-45s, February 2021
                                                                      • Figure 26: Types of food or beverages typically purchased, by living areas, February 2021
                                                                  • Change in Shopping Behaviours during COVID-19

                                                                    • Organic and natural foods’ popularity grows during COVID-19
                                                                      • Figure 27: Share of consumers purchasing more versus less organic/natural products compared to before COVID-19, February 2021
                                                                    • Young adults and parents drive natural and organic’s growth
                                                                      • Figure 28: Share of consumers purchasing more organic/natural products compared to before COVID-19, 18-44s vs over-45s, February 2021
                                                                  • Where Consumers Shop for Natural/Organic Products

                                                                    • Organic and natural claims can help promote trial
                                                                      • Figure 29: Share of consumers who are shopping at fewer stores to find what they need compared to before COVID-19, by age and gender, February 2021
                                                                    • Supermarkets are where most Canadians shop for natural/organic products
                                                                      • Figure 30: Where natural or organic foods/beverages are typically purchased, February 2021
                                                                      • Figure 31: Where natural or organic foods/beverages are typically purchased, 18-44s vs over-45s, February 2021
                                                                  • Associations Made with Natural/Organic Products

                                                                    • Health and the environment are central to the value of natural/organic products
                                                                      • Figure 32: Statements on natural/organic foods/drinks (% agree), February 2021
                                                                      • Figure 33: Natural/organic foods are worth paying more for (% agree), consumers of organic foods/drinks vs consumers of natural foods/drinks vs overall, February 2021
                                                                    • Age influences perceptions towards natural/organic products
                                                                      • Figure 34: Statements on natural/organic foods/drinks (% agree), by age, February 2021
                                                                      • Figure 35: Select statements on natural/organic foods/drinks (% agree), by parental status, February 2021
                                                                      • Figure 36: Natural/organic foods/drinks are a gimmick (% agree), Prairie Provinces vs overall, February 2021
                                                                  • Claims that Matter Most to Canadians

                                                                    • Keep it ‘simple’
                                                                      • Figure 37: Claims that are important when buying food, February 2021
                                                                      • Figure 38: Claims that are important when buying food, consumers of organic foods/drinks vs consumers of natural foods/drinks vs overall, February 2021
                                                                    • Younger and older shoppers have some different priorities
                                                                      • Figure 39: Claims that are important when buying food, by age, February 2021
                                                                      • Figure 40: Claims that are important when buying food, by gender, February 2021
                                                                  • Attitudes towards Natural/Organic Foods and Drinks

                                                                    • COVID-19 has influenced shoppers to buy more organic/natural products
                                                                      • Figure 41: “COVID-19 has influenced me to buy more organic/natural foods as I’m trying to eat healthier” (% agree), 18-44s vs over-45s, February 2021
                                                                    • Not all perceptions of natural/organic foods are positive
                                                                      • Figure 42: Attitudes towards natural/organic foods, February 2021
                                                                      • Figure 43: Categories in which consumers are more likely to purchase organic and natural products, January 2018
                                                                    • Smaller companies get more credit on trust and authenticity
                                                                      • Figure 44: “I have more trust in the authenticity of natural/organic foods from small companies than large companies” (% agree), by age, February 2021
                                                                  • Appendix – Data Sources and Abbreviations

                                                                    • Data sources
                                                                      • Consumer survey data
                                                                        • Mintel Trend Drivers
                                                                          • Consumer qualitative research
                                                                            • Correspondence analysis
                                                                              • Abbreviations and terms
                                                                                • Abbreviations

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