Consumers will want a greater stake in how their food is produced and demand it help improve their health and that of the planet over the coming 10 years.
Those are the predictions from market research company Mintel in its Global Food and Drinks Trend 2030 report.
Admitting there was some way to go, the report said: “In the next 10 years, consumers will become more accepting and trusting in the essential roles science and technology have in guaranteeing access to affordable, safe and nutritious food and drink.”
For instance, Mintel research in Spain found two-thirds of consumers did not find synthetic meat appealing, while nearly a half of US consumers thought non-genetically modified (GM) foods were healthier than GM ones.
There was also some scepticism about the value of organic production among consumers, with more than 60 per cent of Spanish, French, Italian, German and Polish consumers wanting more scientific evidence that organic products were healthier than non-organic food.
Mintel believed urban and indoor farming would become more important in the 2020s as the demand for salads and vegetables grew and consumers sought to get closer to where their food is from.
Concern for the environment was influencing consumer behaviour, the report said.
“Starting in 2020, more consumers, especially Generation Z, will take pride in their personal efforts to be more judicious in their use of packaging and precious resources, such as water.
“The satisfaction derived from sustainable and ethical purchases and actions, such as recycling or reusing packaging, will ignite support for businesses which make environmentally friendly habits easier to adopt and potentially even enjoyable.”
Greater knowledge and concern for individual health was also expected to drive consumer behaviour.
A Mintel spokesperson added: “Through to 2030, more consumers will understand what makes them and their biological needs unique through more widespread access to tests and data collecting technology.
“Consumers will look to companies to help them act on their data and offer custom food and drink.”