- The natural and organic foods and beverages market in the U.S. is projected to reach $69 billion across all retail channels by the end of this year. That's an 11% gain year over year and a 32% increase over five years ago, according to a recent Packaged Facts report.
- The natural and organic segment continues to outpace sales growth of total food and beverage, with a CAGR of 7% from 2012 to 2016.
- The report predicts the natural and organic market to continue on this growth path, with an estimated 70% sales boost between 2016 and 2021.
At this point, if manufacturers aren't making an effort to produce at least some varieties of natural or organic products, they could be doing a disservice to their brand. As the market continues to grow, any manufacturer not on board with this trend could be left behind while consumers seek better-for-you products.
Health trends and concerns about where ingredients come from have permeated every corner of the food and beverage industry, from dairy to desserts. Even if the product isn't inherently healthy, consumers expect the ingredients to be of high quality and from natural rather than artificial sources.
That could be removing artificial colors and flavors, removing or labeling GMO ingredients or using more whole, fresh ingredients, such as meat and produce that are organically or sustainably grown or raised. Price, flavor, convenience and appearance continue to be driving factors in food and beverage purchase decisions, but environmental impact, social impact, animal welfare and transparency are also more important to consumers today.