July 29, 2008

Mintel Unveils New Product Taste Test Winners From IFT 08

Top of mind at IFT 08--the Institute of Food Technologists (IFT) annual meeting and food expo--was, what's the next big thing in food and drink? Mintel took attendees one step closer to answering that question with taste tests highlighting innovative new products from around the globe.

Drawn from Mintel Global New Products Database (GNPD), the taste tests supported IFT 08 presentations by Lynn Dornblaser and David Jago, new product experts at Mintel.

"Mintel's IFT 08 presentations focused on issues and new products driving food and drink innovation," comments Dornblaser. "Our taste tests allowed attendees to experience products firsthand and vote on favorites. Not surprisingly, most of the winning products took a familiar concept and tweaked it to align with consumers' changing taste and lifestyle preferences."

Ingredient Sustainability

With green living becoming a global norm, Mintel looked at food and beverage companies using sustainable ingredients--those that are organic, locally sourced or Fairtrade--to boost their green credentials. IFT 08 attendees tasted some of the latest innovations tracked by Mintel GNPD, choosing Phoenix Organic Apple, Orange and Mango Juice from New Zealand as their favorite.

Coming in at second place were organic, additive-free Falafel Chips from US company Falafel Chips and Dip. Indulgent flavor and a strong brand name gave the third place winner, Starbucks Caffe Mocha Truffles, a competitive edge. Starbucks claims commitment to purchasing cocoa and coffee that are grown and traded in an ethical and sustainable manner.

Inherent Goodness of Ingredients

Latest health and wellness concerns have sparked a return to natural, inherently "good" ingredients over scientifically enhanced foods. At IFT 08, Mintel presented numerous new products containing real fruits, vegetables and wholegrains.

Nabisco Garden Harvest Toasted Chips emerged as the stand out winner. Containing wholegrains and half a serving of fruit or vegetables, the innovative US chips caught tasters' attention for both flavor and creativity. In second place, Lindt Excellence Dark Chocolate with Sea Salt from France provided an ideal balance between sweet and salty. Tasters chose Britvic J20 Apple and Blueberry Soft Drink with real juice third overall.

Healthy Food for Kids

In response to rising childhood obesity, companies are actively looking for healthier products to market to kids. Mintel's taste tests at IFT 08 emphasized new fortified, functional and natural products, with attendees picking Chewits Truly Smoothy Crazy Animals Fruit Gums from the UK as their favorite. The gummies contain real juice and 30% less sugar than similar candies.

A close second was Clif Kid Organic Twisted Fruit Real Fruit Rope, containing a full serving of fruit, from the US. Third place winner was savory Land-Leben Bakki's Colored Croutons for Soup from Hungary. The croutons claim to make eating healthy soup fun for kids.

IFT 08 took place in New Orleans from June 29 to July 1, 2008. Food industry professionals from over 80 countries came to learn about the latest food and drink trends, products and developments from over 1,000 exhibitors. Mintel's presentations were attended by over 500 people.

About Mintel

Mintel is a leading global supplier of consumer, product and media intelligence. For more than 35 years, Mintel has provided insight into key worldwide trends, offering unique data that directly impacts client success. Mintel Global New Products Database (GNPD), your new product partner, tracks international new product launches, innovations and development trends. With offices in Chicago, London, Belfast, Sydney, Shanghai and Tokyo, Mintel has forged a unique reputation as a world-renowned business brand. For more information on Mintel, please visit www.mintel.com.