Description

“Proteins are center of the plate influencers: their flavors drive the side dishes paired around them for nearly half of consumers. And while many agree that flavor in value-added meats is worth the extra cost, the majority of consumers do not. Value-added flavor innovation is a great start to connecting with consumers looking for convenience, but it cannot be the only solution that brands bring to the table. Protein marketers can partner with brands from adjacent categories to cross-promote pairings to keep consumers exploring with ease in a time when consumers are balancing burnout, the allure of foodservice and the volatility of protein prices.”
– Mimi Bonnett, Senior Director – US Reports

This Report covers the following areas:

  • The impact of COVID-19 on consumers and flavors and ingredients in proteins
  • Attitudes about value added proteins
  • Most consumed flavor families with proteins
  • Consumer experience and interest in emerging flavors with proteins

Table of Contents

  1. Overview

    • What you need to know
    • This Report looks at the following areas
    • Definition
    • Market context
    • Economic and other assumptions
    • COVID-19: US context
  2. Executive Summary

    • Top takeaways
    • Market overview
      • Figure 1: Total US sales and fan chart forecast of proteins, at current prices, 2019-21
    • Impact of COVID-19 on proteins
      • Figure 2: Short-, medium- and long-term impact of COVID-19 on proteins, 2021
    • Challenges and Opportunities
    • Less engaged young adults signal a shift in the future protein consumer
      • Figure 3: Proteins consumed, by generation, 2021
    • Think holistically about the meal, not just the meat
      • Figure 4: Protein attitudes and behaviors –,” 2021
    • Classic flavor profiles continue to dominate
      • Figure 5: Preferred protein flavor families, 2020-21
    • But traditions are poised for an update
      • Figure 6: Primary protein flavors, by generation, 2021
    • Millennials driving eastern cuisine exploration
      • Figure 7: Experience and interest in protein flavors – Next, net any future interest, by generation, 2021
  3. The Market – What You Need to Know

    • Supply chain and price volatility doesn’t shake protein engagement
    • Signs point to a shifting dynamic in the protein consumer
    • Keep pandemic cooks engaged in the kitchen
    • Proteins have conflicting health associations
    • Environmental and ethical attention will become table stakes
  4. State of the Market

    • Lingering pandemic = lingering sales for some
      • Figure 8: Total US sales and fan chart forecast of proteins, at current prices, 2019-21
    • Proteins consumed remain traditional
      • Figure 9: Proteins consumed, 2021
    • Younger adults less likely to engage
      • Figure 10: Proteins consumed, by generation, 2021
    • Classic flavors are poised for change
      • Figure 11: Primary protein flavors, by generation, 2021
    • Volatile supply chain impacts availability and prices
      • Figure 12: Changes in consumer food price indexes, by category, year-over-year, 2020-2021
    • Rise in home cooking points to flavor opportunities
      • Figure 13: Cooking frequency, by generation, 2021
    • Ties to health are tricky
      • Figure 14: Protein Associations, September 2020
    • Environmental concerns slowly chipping away at protein choice
      • Figure 15: Top claims with animal and plant-based proteins, October 2018-2021
      • Figure 16: Environmental claims – Protein, 2016-2021
  5. Market Opportunities

    • Experiential convenience can keep consumers cooking…
      • Figure 17: Protein attitudes and behaviors, 2021
    • …and can be a gateway to reach younger consumers
    • Evolving palates point to heating and sweetening up the menu
      • Figure 18: Preferred protein flavor families, by generation, 2021
    • Plant-based alternatives and blends deliver on convenience for parents
      • Figure 19: Plant-based protein consumption changes, by parental status, February 2021
  6. Companies and Brands – Key Takeaways

    • Value-added Latin rises
    • Operators move to mainstream plant-based
    • Middle Eastern/Mediterranean poised for expansion
  7. Product Development: Now – What’s Trending

    • Value-added proteins take Latin inspiration from menus
    • Spicy chicken war lands in the freezer case
    • Sweet heat is borderless
    • Mainstreaming of meat analogs moves beyond burgers
      • Figure 20: Top-growing claims – Meat, poultry, fish, meat substitutes, Q2 2021
  8. Product Development: Near – What to Watch For

    • Poultry brands dress up chicken thighs with global flavors
    • Meat snacks 2.0
  9. Product Development: Next – What’s in the Pipeline

    • Mediterranean/Middle Eastern
      • Figure 21: Interest and experience with flavor – net any future interest, 2021
  10. The Consumer – Key Takeaways

    • Protein flavor sets the stage
    • Proteins consumed remain traditional
    • Younger adults lean into complex flavors
    • Layer the flavor
    • Regional flavors, heat are next generation flavors
  11. Attitudes and Behaviors toward Proteins

    • It’s all about the flavor with meats and meat analogs
      • Figure 22: Protein attitudes and behaviors, 2021
      • Figure 23: Protein attitudes and behaviors, by gender, 2021
    • Parents key target for value-added proteins
      • Figure 24: Protein attitudes and behaviors, by parental status, 2021
  12. Proteins (and Alternatives) Consumed

    • Proteins consumed remain traditional
      • Figure 25: Proteins consumed, 2021
    • Less-engaged young adults signal a shift in the future protein consumer
      • Figure 26: Proteins consumed, by generation, 2021
  13. Preferred Protein Flavor Families

    • Classic flavor profiles continue to dominate
      • Figure 27: Preferred protein flavor families, 2020-21
      • Figure 27: Preferred protein flavor families, by generation, 2021
  14. Now: Primary Protein Flavors Consumed

    • Classics can pave the way for flavor combo inspirations
      • Figure 28: Primary protein flavors, 2021
      • Figure 29: TURF Analysis – Preferred protein flavors, July 2021
    • Women more engaged with mainstream flavors
      • Figure 30: Primary protein flavors, by gender, 2021
    • Gen Zs are lukewarm on the classics
      • Figure 31: Primary protein flavors, by generation, 2021
  15. Near – Experience and Interest in Protein Flavors

    • Consumers find heat through regional flavors
      • Figure 32: Experience and interest in protein flavors – Near, 2021
    • Gen Zs, Millennials more interested in near flavors than mainstream ones
      • Figure 33: Experience and interest in protein flavors – Near, net any future interest, by generation, 2021
  16. Next – Experience and Interest in Protein Flavors

    • “Next” flavors gain steam despite pandemic
      • Figure 34: Experience and interest in protein flavors – Next, 2021
    • Millennials driving eastern cuisine exploration
      • Figure 35: Experience and interest in protein flavors – Next, net any future interest, by generation, 2021
  17. Interest in Trial

    • Parents, especially dads, eager for new protein flavors
      • Figure 36: Interest in trial, by generation, parental status and gender, 2021
  18. Appendix – Data Sources and Abbreviations

    • Data sources
    • Sales data
    • Consumer survey data
    • Abbreviations and terms
    • Abbreviations

About the report

This market report provides in-depth analysis and insight supported by a range of data. At the same time, introductory and top-level content is provided to give you an overview of the issues covered.

Market

Mintel provides a range of market information, frequently through the category level, including market size and forecasting, complete with market drivers that illustrate the forces that shape a category or market.

Consumer

Mintel’s proprietary consumer research provides our analysts with the attitudinal and behavioral data used to provide valuable insight to topical issues.

Brand/Company

Mintel provides overviews of the top brands and manufacturers, and uses consumer research to explore attitudes and reactions to brands, as well as insight into what will resonate with consumers.

Data

Market reports provide appendices of data to support the research and insight produced. Our tables of data are easily manipulated and downloadable to support your research needs and covers factors from consumer attitudes to market forecasts.

Below is a sample report, understand what you are buying.

Click to show report

Please Note: This is a sample report. All of the figures, graphs, and tables have been redacted. Also, our reports come in PDF, Powerpoint, Word and Excel Databook formats.

Trusted by companies. Big and small.

Bell Logo - Mintel client
Boots Logo - Mintel Client
Kelloggs Logo - Mintel client
Samsung Logo - Mintel client
Nike Logo - Mintel client
Walgreens Logo - Mintel client

Want to speak to us directly?

Contact us on via phone or fill out a form with your enquiry.

Contact Us