Ways of Eating by Consumer Segment
We also looked at the eating patterns of the different consumer segments, particularly in light of the rise in flexitarian eating and its association with health. In the overall population, 38% of consumers are either reducing their meat intake or don’t eat meat at all. For active lifestyle and sports performance consumers, though, this is much higher—at 46% and 50%, respectively.
Breaking it down further, we find that consumers who identify as flexitarian include 38% of active lifestyle consumers and 42% of sports performance consumers (compared to 31% of the overall population). These two groups are also the most likely to be vegan (at 3% for active lifestyle and 5% for sports performance consumers).
Opportunities in Plant-Based Products for Active and Performance Consumers
The greater interest in plant-based eating shown by active lifestyle and sports performance consumers offers food and beverage brands some exciting opportunities. These include the development or expansion of plant-based protein powders and bars for before, during, or after workouts, as well as other high-protein plant-based snacks targeting athletes.
It can also mean protein-packed plant-based meals such as high-protein cereal and plant-based meat dishes with active and performance lifestyle messaging. Plant-based meals that offer sustained energy for the day or refueling and recovery benefits are likely to appeal to these consumers.