Retail Trends in Free-From Presentation

Originally Published: July 6, 2016
Last Updated: February 22, 2021

“Retail Trends in Free-From” was presented at the 2016 Clean Label Conference by Carl Jorgensen, MSc, Director, Global Consumer Strategy – Wellness, Daymon Worldwide.

Abstract: The growing concern about food safety has increased the clean label trend to publicize what food additives are not acceptable. “Free-from” lists are used by some retailers. One approach is to publish a list of specific ingredients not included in their private brands’ products. Another approach is to publish ingredient categories (e.g. synthetic colors) not used by their brands, which automatically covers many ingredients that may not be on consumers’ radar. This session looked at trends, advantages and disadvantages of some widely employed free-from strategies, and provided an understanding of the implications of the different approaches in helping to build successful programs at retail.

An excerpt from the written summary of this presentation: Based on survey results from Nutrition Business Journal and GNT Group, Jorgensen said consumers pay nearly as much attention to free-from claims as they do easy-to-understand ingredient information (67%). The top concerns are: no artificial additives (62%), free from preservatives (61%) and no artificial colorants (60%).

“Avoidance of GMOs is a trend that has been stable for some time, and consumers are changing their attitudes towards fats—looking to avoid trans fats and partially hydrogenated oils, but also looking for good fats from plant, dairy or animal sources,” he added.

“An important trend for brand managers to consider is that consumers increasingly view the absence of ‘bad’ ingredients as a baseline, or price of entry, and are making more decisions based on positive attributes—like nutrients and fair trade.”

Click here to view a written summary “‘Free-From’ Labeling Trends” of this presentation.

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