Weekly Roundup

Plant-based food products becoming a more popular option

Almost half of the UK population (44%) would consider trying a plant-based product because of the positive health benefits, according to new research conducted by Product of the Year, the UK’s biggest survey of product innovation.

Conducted online last month, UK consumers were asked to identify factors that would encourage them to try a plant-based product with 31% citing cost as a determining factor (the second most popular response after health benefits) with one in four (25%) identifying environmental factors.

With people playing closer attention to their diet during (and post) lockdown and increasingly adopting ‘flexitarian’ diets, the sales of plant-based products have soared. Recent stats from Kantar showed an 87% increase in plant-based product sales, buoyed by the success of initiatives such as Veganuary.

Kellogg's launching innovative packaging for the blind

Kellogg’s has marked World Sight Day by launching Coco Pops boxes for blind and partially sighted people as a trial in almost 60 Co-op stores. The new boxes have been created in partnership with the Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB). They feature UK-first technology that allows a smartphone to detect an on-pack code which triggers the playback of labelling and allergen information to the user. The trial comes after research from RNIB revealed that nine in ten blind and partially sighted people feel that information on food packaging is difficult or impossible to read.

The technology, called NaviLens, is currently used across Barcelona, Madrid, and other Spanish city’s transport systems, making the cities easier to navigate for visually impaired people. It has now been introduced in the UK for the first time as part of the Kellogg’s trial. It is also the first time NaviLens has been used on food packaging. If successful, the business hopes to adapt more of its cereal boxes to include the technology.

Waitrose bags the award for ‘Supermarket of the year’

Waitrose has won the title of ‘Supermarket of the Year’ at the annual Which? awards that recognise brands across various industries for good customer service, value for money, innovation, and breadth of offering. In the supermarket category, Waitrose saw off competition from shortlisted rivals including Asda, Iceland, Sainsbury’s and Tesco.

The consumer watchdog praised the chain’s response to the pandemic, offering customers a range of ways to shop, particularly for the elderly and vulnerable. It said Waitrose have handled the increase in demand for groceries particularly well, particularly during a difficult economic period.