The pandemic has influenced the way Americans think about food and more importantly how they are approaching cooking at home. In fact, 85% of Americans say that they will be cooking more at home in 2022.1
Food manufacturers have an opportunity to get ahead of the curve by innovating new products with unique ingredients and flavors, as well as added convenience, to make at-home mealtime more memorable.
Vegan sauces, salad dressings and marinades with clean ingredients are increasing in popularity and offer an easy and approachable way to amplify the flavor profile of proteins, vegetables and starches. Whether you're a food manufacturer who makes plant-based products, snack foods, functional foods or prepared foods for grocery or foodservice, now is the time to consider choosing a healthy, non-GMO oil that will not only benefit your product formulations but will also please your customers.
Sunflower oil is a premium, healthy oil that is low in saturated fats and high in monounsaturated fats. As a result, sunflower oil often gives products a longer shelf life. It also contains only a trace of Omega 3 fats, making it more stable than many other oils. In addition, sunflower oil can help create cleaner product labels, due to natural antioxidants and the fact that it meets an FDA claim that states high-oleic oils, such as monounsaturated fats, may reduce the risk of heart disease.2
Consumers want transparency about the ingredients that food manufacturers are using and as a result, many Americans are actively seeking out food products that have minimal environmental impact. In fact, a recent survey indicates that 68% of Americans are willing to pay more for products that contain sustainable ingredients.3 Sunflowers enrich and rejuvenate the soil and the "no-till" process used to manage sunflower crops helps decrease soil erosion and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Sunflowers also help maintain honeybee populations, since sunflower florets contain high levels of nectar and pollen.
It's also not surprising that 75% of consumers want products made with sunflower oil.3 People are demanding non-GMO products, with lower saturated fats and are seeking foods that meet individual dietary needs. Sunflower oil is Kosher and Halal, which is beneficial for the creation of many speciality foods.
Within in the speciality food category, plant-based product innovation is one of the fastest growing. Sunflower oil is an excellent choice for plant-based formulations since it has a neutral flavor and can help with the texture and mouthfeel for a variety of products including beyond meat applications, non-dairy beverages, sauces and spreads and even bakery products such as cookies, crackers and artisanal breads.
If you're curious about how sunflower oil will perform in your product formulations, download this helpful white paper or contact a sunflower oil supplier.
- Kostyo, M. 2021. "What’s ahead in 2022?" Webcast, Dec. 9. Dataessential for the Food Institute, Upper Saddle River, N.J. Foodinstitute.com.
- Edible oils must contain at least 70% oleic acid and need to be substituted for saturated fats. All high oleic sunflower oil and some mid oleic sunflower oil qualify for this claim.
- Omnibus survey hosted on the Maru/Blue Research Forum on October 26, 2021.