What has caused the need for food innovation?

What has caused the need for food innovation?

Anastasia Gutkevich, Founder & CEO at Bifidice. 5 min reading.

Over the past decade, we have witnessed a remarkable surge in innovative methods of food production, exemplified by advancements such as lab-grown meat, 3D food printing, alternative proteins, plastic-free smart packaging, vertical farming, restaurant digitization and healthy food.

The demand for these technologies is propelled by concerns about animal welfare, health implications of excessive meat consumption, the desire for more environmentally friendly food sources and the exponential increase in food allergies.

A dysbiosis or an imbalance of our microbiota could cause food allergies. Our scientific team wrote a full article about this called: “Links between gut microbiota and food allergies”

This begs the question: What has triggered this wave of transformation and elevated the global health and wellness food market to a projected worth of $232.46 billion by 2030? [1][2]

There have been several significant changes that have contributed to this shift, but they can all be classified into two main factors: environmental impact and dietary choices.

Awareness and concern about the environmental impact

Threats such as the imminent water crises and the deteriorated soils have increased awareness throughout society and increased the prominence of environmental sustainability. The United Nations has also taken actions to raise environmental awareness without mentioning other factors influencing this, such as entertainment platforms showing documentaries about the meat or fish industry's impact on our world.

The world population is constantly expanding, and fortunately, it seems like humanity has come to understand that if we continue doing things the same way we have been, there won't be a promising future for the next generations. 

This has led to innovative approaches in food production such as vertical farming, which maximizes space efficiency, growing crops in vertically stacked layers using artificial lighting and controlled environments. Some other companies, like Apeel Sciences, Nanology, and Bluapple, for example, have developed extremely thin spray-on films that inhibit bacterial growth and retain water in fruit, which can reduce food waste and increase the shelf life of produce.

The second factor that is setting up the new rules for the food industry is the shift in consumer preferences, driven by well-informed shoppers.

Well-informed consumers

As people have become more aware of the link between diet and health, there has been a growing demand for healthier food options. Additionally, the rise of chronic diseases and food allergies is prompting people to read labels in order to make informed purchase decisions. 

For consumers who say they are watching their weight, 81% read the nutritional panel on product labels, and of these, 59% say they use the information to make purchase decisions and a study conducted by McKinsey found that around 85 million American shoppers avoid a top nine food allergen in most or all of their purchasing decisions [3]

Food allergies have become a global problem and it’s estimated that Worldwide food allergy prevalence ranges from 1.1% to 10.8%.[4] The range of foods to which people are allergic has also widened, with seafood, milk, and nuts being the classical ones, but now a whole range of products can cause allergies.

This situation is pushing the industry to develop products tailored to individual needs and preferences. We are witnessing advances in genetic modification and freeze drying (and many others) to satisfy consumers but foremost, to help them live free from the burden of dietary restrictions, while maintaining the nutritional value they need.





  1. Globe Newswire. (2023). Global Health and Wellness Foods Market to Reach $1.6 Trillion by 2030. Retrieved from https://www.globenewswire.com/news-release/2023/02/16/2610004/0/en/Global-Health-and-Wellness-Foods-Market-to-Reach-1-6-Trillion-by-2030.html 
  2. Cision PR Newswire. (2023). Global Health and Wellness Foods Strategic Market Report 2023: Market to Reach $1.6 Trillion by 2030 - Focus on Healthy Eating for Everyday Wellness Provides the Foundation for the Growth. Retrieved from https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/global-health-and-wellness-foods-strategic-market-report-2023-market-to-reach-1-6-trillion-by-2030---focus-on-healthy-eating-for-everyday-wellness-provides-the-foundation-for-the-growth-301749683.html 
  3. McKinsey & Company. (2020). Consumers with food allergies: A growing market remains underserved. Retrieved from https://www.mckinsey.com/industries/consumer-packaged-goods/our-insights/consumers-with-food-allergies-a-growing-market-remains-underserved 
  4. Food Insights. (2022). Food Allergies Across the Globe. Retrieved from https://foodinsight.org/food-allergies-across-the-globe/


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