The pandemic has altered and reset our priorities in terms of our dietary preferences and for all the right reasons. Indian consumers today are making conscious efforts to consume food that will aid in improving the over health and fitness of the body. They are not just more aware but also more receptive to foods with health benefits. This gives the Indian Health Food industry a humongous opportunity to cater to customers who are now focusing on health, convenience and sustainability.
- ‘Woke’ customers – Brands today cannot get away with just terming their products as healthy as Indian consumers are much more aware about nutritional labels, ingredients and the health benefits. India is a value driven market and mindful diet and wellness is at the centre of the Indian Health Food industry. And it’s not just about mindful eating, it is also about mindful sourcing and manufacturing of food. Companies today are therefore stressing on being sustainable in all their processes to satisfy not just their customers taste buds but also their ethics.
- The COVID-19 pandemic– According to a Nielsen wellness survey, the promise of ‘high-protein’, ‘fibre-rich foods’ and ‘all natural ingredients’ were perceived to be important to Indian consumers therefore presenting brands with the inspiration to cater to these health attributes. The COVID-19 pandemic paved the way for the growth and awareness of these auxiliary health benefits and thus the rise in the number of health-conscious customers in the country.
- The Rise of Superfoods – The age-old ingredients that our ancestors used, are now back in shiny packages and are well received by millennials across India. The rise in the use of amla, wheatgrass, spices, quinoa, oils, etc. just goes to show that our ancestors understood food and nutrition much before packaged food came along. Consumers are on the constant lookout for foods that not just satiate their hunger but also taste good and superfoods are doing just that but in a new avatar.
- Loosen the purse strings – Well if you want more value, you have to pay more and Indian consumers are okay with doing just that. They are ready to pay a higher price for healthy variants, specific ingredients and of course better health benefits that meet their requirements. Rising income levels in Tier II markets have also further accelerated this growth.
- Vocal for Local – Gone are the days when muesli and granola were only found abroad. Local and national brands have taken the health food industry by a storm and consumers actually go out of their way to support local brands and small businesses. This enables better quality and trust and is a win-win situation for both the parties.
Both brands and consumers have successfully hopped onto the health food wagon and have created a community of people driven by the passion to eat healthy and stay fit. Safe to say that this wave of awareness about the food and wellness industry in India is here to stay and only continue growing from where it is today.