The plant-based chocolate industry is skyrocketing – with the global industry expected to reach US$4 billion by 2032. But why? What consumer drivers are causing market growth?
In its latest New Food Hub article, ProVeg International investigates the main consumer drivers for the expanding plant-based chocolate industry. With this knowledge, businesses can better understand how to approach the segment and target audiences, and how to design, merchandise, and market successful products.
Health and intolerances
One of the most significant consumer motivations for dairy-free chocolate products is, perhaps surprisingly, health.
Rising health consciousness is driving consumers’ search for healthier snacking alternatives and higher-quality chocolate. This is leading them to plant-based chocolate products, which are perceived as being healthier than conventional dairy-based varieties.
Indeed, research shows that 86% of consumers around the world feel that chocolate should be both tasty and healthy. Plant-based dark chocolate products are likely to see the greatest consumer pull, since they have been found to contain health-boosting nutrients.
The increasing number of consumers with milk allergies is further driving the plant-based chocolate segment, as consumers seek delicious milk-free confectionery options.
Multiple world markets, especially Europe, have shown an inclination towards premium-quality plant-based chocolate products, especially those made with organic or single-origin cocoa beans.
This trend is largely driven by the growing health consciousness of consumers and their desire to consume ‘better-for-you’ products, which tend to be premium by nature. It is likely to slow (but not stagnate) in the coming years, as consumers’ disposable income decreases with the cost-of-living crisis.
Interestingly, new research shows that 55% of consumers feel that chocolates with multiple flavors and textures are more premium, making flavor and texture pivotal to the success of premium plant-based chocolate products.
To uncover the remaining consumer drivers for the plant-based chocolate industry, read ProVeg’s full article.
For help with your plant-based product strategy, get in touch with ProVeg International at [email protected].