Nearly 3% of global food and beverage launches and 6% of US food/bev launches were marketed on a ‘high-protein’ or ‘source-of-protein’ positioning in the year ending March 31, 2014, according to data from Innova Market Insights.
“The time is right for protein innovation,” said Innova’s director of innovation Lu Ann Williams, who will be talking about the protein trend at the IFT show in New Orleans later this month at its 'Taste the Trend' Pavilion (booth #3651).
“Proteins have diverse application potential, with opportunities for alternative vegetarian options, and new protein sources – such as microalgae – alongside existing and novel dairy-based and vegetable sources, such as soy, beans and grains.”
Whey protein demand soaring in Asia
Meanwhile, demand for whey protein is soaring as a result of growing demand in certain Asian markets, as well as its rising popularity as a natural, healthy ingredient, particularly in sports, medical and infant nutrition, and in weight management, said Williams.
Looking at protein R&D, while vegetables lead the list for the number of published protein patents in food and beverage, whey has risen from eighth position in 2012 to third position in 2013, she added.
At the same time, the number of nut and seed protein patents has also risen sharply, from single figures in 2012 to more than 200 in 2013, she said.
“Even more exciting has been the strong activity in patent actions relating to algae-derived proteins.”
Click HERE to read a more detailed analysis of protein trends.