Six Smoothie Trends to Watch in 2016
Stacey Archibald

26th January 2016

2016 Smoothie Trends from Hamilton Beach Commercial

 

Smoothies seem like a recent trend, but they were invented in the 1930s — right along with the blender. Now they're ubiquitous, and consumer demand shows no sign of slowing. Why are smoothies so popular? They represent the convergence of several trends: health-conscious eating, portability and personalisation. Here's a closer look at six trends that will shape the smoothie market in 2016.

 

1. Customisation is everything.

One of the main reasons consumers love smoothies is that they're made fresh, to match individual preferences. After affordability and portability, customisation is most important to customers of smoothie shops, Mintel reports. Popular add-ins include vitamins, minerals, probiotics, protein, nuts, grains and seeds.

This trend goes both ways, however. Smoothie sellers should be aware of local, regional and seasonal taste preferences and customise their offerings accordingly.  Mintel offers a detailed look at regional taste profiles in its March 2015 smoothie report.

 

2. Consumers are becoming more aware of sugar consumption.

Sugar has become the latest dietary villain; for the smoothie market, this offers an opportunity to entice consumers with low-sugar blends. Sweeteners, are one option; naturally sweet fruit, like pineapple and mango, are another.

 

3. Baby Boomers don't fully understand the benefits of smoothies

Baby Boomer-aged consumers choose smoothies because they're refreshing and because they're better than soda or sugary drinks, according to Mintel. However, they still perceive smoothies as unhealthy. This age group isn't as aware of the potential nutritional benefits of smoothies, such as vitamins, nutrients and fiber content. Smoothie makers have an opportunity to market products to this age group as a health-positive choice.

 

4. For millennials, smoothies are an everyday indulgence.

For millennials, smoothies aren't a healthy drink as much as an everyday ritual. "It's more of a snack and a treat, as opposed to, 'I'm drinking this to be refreshed,'" says Ieva Grimm, president of convenience-store consulting firm Synerge. The stereotypical smoothie drinker may be a young, health-conscious, college-aged woman — but that's not exactly accurate. More men than women aged 18 to 34 order smoothies and shakes at top chains, Mintel says.

 

5. More consumers view smoothies as veggie vehicles.

With fresh vegetable consumption rising, people are using smoothies as an easy way to get their daily recommended allowance. Greens such as kale and spinach are popular smoothie ingredients, and the flavor's easily camouflaged with fruit for veggie-averse customers. 

 

6. It pays to try a little something different.

Smoothies seem like a pretty simple concoction: fruit + ice + add-ins + cup + straw. But experimenting with out-of-the-ordinary ingredients has proved successful for some foodservice companies.

Tropical Smoothie reported strong traffic for its 2015 Avocolada, with avocado, pineapple, spinach, kale, coconut and lime and if a new offering's not a hit at first, adjust the recipe. 

Even the straw can be tinkered with. In April 2015, Starbucks introduced a cookie straw, lined with chocolate, to complement its Frappuccinos.  "A Starbucks spokeswoman said the straws...have been one of the most popular packaged bakery items in stock," the Wall Street Journal reports.
 

This blog was originally published by Hamilton Beach Commercial. For the original post please visti the Hamilton Beach Commerical Blog here.

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