Nellson, LLC, a leading manufacturer and co-packer of nutritional bars and functional powders, reveals customer requests for plant-based protein have doubled in the past four years.
“Today’s consumers are recognizing the nutritional benefits that plant-based products offer”
According to a recent report, Nellson, which manufactures branded and private label nutritional bar and functional powders, says customer requests for plant-based protein have risen sharply from 2018, when 20% of its customers requested plant-based protein, compared to 80% for dairy. Today, demand for plant-based protein has increased to 40%, with 60% requesting dairy.
“Today’s consumers are recognizing the nutritional benefits that plant-based products offer and, now more than ever, want plant-based proteins on the ingredient list when purchasing nutrition bars and powders,” said Bart Child, chief commercial officer of California-based Nellson.
Other market research supports this finding. In 2020, market intelligence company Fior Markets predicted the vegan protein powder segment would be worth $13.19Bn by 2026.
According to the firm, the segment’s booming popularity is being driven heavily by US and Canadian consumers, whose growing flexitarian, vegetarian and vegan populations are increasingly aware of the health and environmental benefits of plant-based diets.
Vegan or flexitarian athletes, such as Chris Paul, Kyrie Irving, Lewis Hamilton, Michael Phelps and Aly Raisman, who often report improved performance after switching to plant-based protein, are also helping to drive the shift.
In North America, popular nutrition bars include brands like Clif Bar, LUNA Bars, Huel, No Cow and ALOHA, while top-selling powders include Vega, Mikuna, Orgain, Ka’Chava and Venus Williams’ Happy Viking.
As Child states, “At Nellson, we aim to identify and anticipate popular demands and future trends to help our brand partners stay informed and prepare them for what’s to come in nutritional products such as bars and powders.”