Anuga 2023: Our top 3 top takeaways from Cologne!
Earlier this month, the SVZ team arrived in Cologne, Germany, to take part in one of the most exciting events in the food and beverage industry’s calendar: Anuga. This year’s theme was ‘Sustainable Growth’, and we were looking forward to making connections with other eco-conscious businesses and learning more about the green innovations and trends making headway in our sector.
This year’s trade show was busier than ever: more than 140,000 visitors from across the globe attended. Our eye-catching booth was busy over the event’s five days, and we were able to have many high-quality conversations with customers, partners and industry stakeholders. Keep reading to discover our top three takeaways from the event…
1. Plant-based potential
Plant-based remains one of the most important trends in the F&B industry today, with meat and dairy-free options providing alternatives to an ever-growing flexitarian market, who perceive them as both healthier and better for the planet. At Anuga, the popularity of the plant-based movement was obvious, particularly within beverages: we spotted lots of exciting new products from a coconut cream-based smoothie in flavours including passionfruit and mango, to a fruit soda made from fermented cucumber juice!
There is undoubtedly a growing demand for fruit and vegetable-based solutions to animal-derived ingredients, and we’re seeing this trend replicated in our customer conversations. At SVZ, we recognise that a transition to a more plant-based diet is necessary for a sustainable, healthy planet – and we’re proud to offer delicious, 100% natural ingredients that can support this shift.
2. Functionality first
Consumers want more from their food than ever before – indeed, the functional food market is expected to grow at a CAGR of 8.5% through 2030. Whether it’s for enhanced immunity, increased energy, beauty and skin health or general wellbeing, the demand is great – and this was reflected at Anuga, with ‘high protein’ and mood-boosting’ being two of the most common claims we spotted.
We had numerous discussions at the trade fair about how fruit and vegetable ingredients can support these formulations. With their naturally high vitamin, antioxidant and fibre content, as well as their clean label credentials, they are a no-brainer for any new functional recipe! Plus, with many added actives giving off-flavours, what could be better than strawberry puree or blackberry concentrate to ensure a delicious taste?
3. Sustainable success
This year’s Anuga had a primary focus on the responsible use of resources: from the optimisation of the supply chain, through to fair food production. As a topic very close to our heart (check out our green initiatives here), we were excited to take part in many of the talks at the event. In a session at the Anuga Trend Zone with Innova Market Insights, the concept of ‘positively imperfect’ was discussed – how openness about the complexity of sustainability is often appreciated by consumers, who do not expect 100% perfection but want transparency and to see that brands are committed to the journey.
The importance of being truly transparent with our sustainability efforts is something we’re keen to embrace too. Not all our sustainability initiatives have been easy to bring to life – take our paper-based mulching paper trial, for example, which was started to reduce plastic waste but was initially unsuccessful. It has been an iterative process and we have now seen encouraging results with a new biofilm version. We firmly believe that ‘owning’ our mistakes is crucial so we can move forward and continue to innovate.
It was great to meet customers and partners – both old and new – at Anuga 2023. We’re looking forward to the next show in 2025 – but until then, let’s move forward with new sustainability initiatives and product development programmes to take the F&B industry to the next level.
If you have a question about how our 100% natural, high-quality fruit and vegetable ingredients can transform your next product innovation, or if you’d like to learn more about our sustainability initiatives, get in touch with our team today.