Organic products were once seen as passing trends; now, however, they’ve become a foundational expectation among natural product brands and their consumer bases. Their rise has created several smaller trends which are shaping this industry significantly.
According to the Organic Produce Network and Category Partners report, inflation was responsible for an upswing in organic fresh produce sales dollar sales while simultaneously suppressing unit volume sales during 2022’s second quarter.
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1. Non-dairy milk alternatives
Plant-based alternatives to dairy milk have quickly become a staple in American diets, from soy and coconut to oat and almond. With such a wide variety available, Americans may soon have no reason to be drinking cow’s milk anymore!
Milk alternatives such as soy, oat, and almond milk are often fortified with calcium, vitamin D and B-12 to match the nutritional benefits of dairy milk production while being better for the environment – it requires nine times more land for dairy milk production compared with soy, oat or almond alternatives.
Organic fresh fruits and vegetables remain the top sellers in the organic produce industry. Yet, consumers seek out other items with cleaner labels, like organic beverages and baby food – driven by healthy eating trends. This growth of these products is being propelled by rising consumer awareness of healthier lifestyle choices.
Insects are being investigated as an environmentally sustainable source of protein that can be grown on organic side streams. Not only do they emit lower greenhouse gas emissions than traditional livestock grazing techniques, but their production year-round also makes for less land requirements and greater sustainability.
Many tropical countries already eat insects as part of their diet; however, national statistics don’t accurately represent this reality and it is hard to find information regarding entomophagy (the practice of eating insects).
Rearing insects on a large scale for human consumption is still far off, though currently practiced at special facilities on a smaller scale. Food safety issues that may arise at this scale must be thoroughly explored; additionally, proper growing practices and consumer education efforts are crucial to increasing consumer acceptance of insect cuisines such as entomophagy.
Organic seaweed’s rising popularity is expected to remain on an upward trend. The rise in popularity is likely because seaweed is a natural, plant-based source of fiber that has been shown to promote good gut bacteria levels and support healthy intestinal functioning.
Recent current events have had minimal effects on commercial seaweed production; however, demand from both consumers and recovered coronavirus patients will drive its market growth over the near future. Furthermore, increasing the use of seaweed extracts such as alginate and carrageenan will drive this success and create innovative seaweed-based products.
4. Plant-based diets
As organic sales increase, so too has demand for plant-based products beyond fresh fruits and vegetables.
These diets limit foods high in saturated fat and salt that increase cholesterol levels and clog arteries with waxy plaque. By doing this, they also lower the risk for obesity, type 2 diabetes, heart health benefits, and blood pressure reduction. They also require less land and water for animal feed production and emit fewer climate-altering greenhouse gasses into the atmosphere.
An effective plant-based diet provides adequate fiber, vitamins, minerals, and protein. Plenty of cookbooks and websites offer recipes and guidance to assist consumers in switching to this lifestyle.
5. Regenerative Farming: Nurturing a Green Future
Regenerative farming emerges as a potent force within the organic agriculture sector, stressing comprehensive strategies that rejuvenate and amplify the land’s health. Unlike traditional farming, heavily dependent on chemical aids and monoculture, regenerative farming emphasizes soil health, biodiversity enhancement, and fostering sturdy ecosystems.
Cover cropping is a core tenet of regenerative farming, utilizing a variety of plants to cover soil during dormant phases. Such crops safeguard soil against erosion, assist nitrogen fixation, and enhance soil composition. Crop rotation is another crucial method that interrupts pest cycles, lowering the requirement for artificial pesticides. Farmers can maintain soil composition and impede carbon loss by minimizing or avoiding tillage.
Regenerative farming not only shields the environment but also improves the produce quality. Well-nourished soils yield nutrient-packed crops, ensuring consumers get more nutritious and tastier organic products.
6. Vegetable-Based Meat Substitutes: Transforming Protein Origins
As plant-based diets become prevalent, the need for creative vegetable-based meat substitutes rises. These products use cutting-edge technology and plant ingredients to mimic the flavor, texture, and look of traditional meats without using animal products.
Vegetable-based meat substitutes boast several benefits, positioning them as appealing choices for health-aware and eco-conscious consumers. They typically contain less saturated fat and cholesterol, reducing heart disease risks and other health concerns linked to high meat intake. These substitutes also have a smaller ecological footprint, needing fewer resources, generating fewer greenhouse gasses, and mitigating animal suffering.
By choosing vegetable-based meat substitutes, consumers can relish a wide variety of tasty and sustainable proteins aligning with their ethical and dietary desires.
7. Local and Seasonal Foods: Empowering Communities and Lessening Carbon Output
In an era of elevated ecological consciousness, customers increasingly prefer local, seasonal organic foods. Buying locally grown items not only backs local farmers and bolsters local economies but also cuts carbon emissions related to long-haul transport.
Local foods are usually fresher, retaining more nutrients and taste due to less transit time. Moreover, purchasing seasonal foods fosters an understanding of regional natural cycles and encourages a diverse diet based on seasonal availability.
Choosing local, seasonal organic foods allows customers to make aware decisions promoting sustainability, reducing carbon output, and appreciating the local abundance of nature. Supporting local growers and adopting seasonal eating can ultimately lead to a more robust and eco-friendly food system.
8. Permaculture gardening
Permaculture gardens aren’t just gardens; they’re ecosystems!
Permaculture plays an essential role in energy conservation by prioritizing local food production to decrease transportation needs and pollution from long-distance travel while also utilizing resources like rainwater capture and solar panels to generate power.