Pork is a Powerhouse for Protein-Focused Diets
The idea of eating healthy is hardly new for American consumers. However, the way consumers approach health is constantly changing.
One of the most recent diet trends is the protein-focused diet. According to research we commissioned by Nielsen, protein is an important consideration for 54% of consumers when buying foods, and 5% say someone in their household follows a protein-focused diet. What’s more, is that meat remains the top protein choice, despite a growing category of plant-based protein alternatives.
This diet isn’t just popular at home, though. A recent “Healthy Dining Trends” report from Mintel stated that 33% of diners ranked protein as the most important health attribute sought when dining out, outranking all other attributes, including “multiple vegetable servings.”
According to NPD Eating Patterns in America 2018, consumers are seeking protein more than ever before, so that information needs to be prominent. In light of this, we need to ensure consumers are aware that pork is an excellent source of protein.
Store signage and displays at POS, especially around lean cuts like tenderloin, should feature messaging that showcases pork as an excellent source of protein.
As for restaurant operators, menu items featuring pork should have an “excellent source of protein” label. Pork LTOs can also be created and promoted, calling out pork as a protein hero. As we saw in our Datassential’s screens last week, pork medallion skewers, a grilled pork tenderloin apple salad and the Thai pork bowl are all protein-packed options that scored well among consumers. Unique dishes with a punch of protein are attractive to consumers and could draw in a slew of new customers.
Additionally, we should implement messaging and protein dish examples from the USDA’s MyPlate program. Simple explanations of pork’s nutritional value can reinforce pork’s healthy role in a balanced diet.
Protein-focused diets may only be among many modern diet trends consumers are paying attention to, but the data suggest it’s one we should jump on. Pork has a real opportunity to message its health benefits, so we have to make sure we help it thrive.
Have you seen any restaurant chains or grocery stores experiment with incorporating more protein options into dishes? If so, let us know. We welcome any ideas on how to elevate the visibility of pork among consumers seeking an excellent source of protein.