Food For Thought - November 2023

Spotting interesting trends and finding noteworthy food facts and figures is a big part of what we do at Ceres. Here are 10 recent articles, reports and long reads that made us stop and think

November 29, 2023
Kathryn Race
November 29, 2023
Kathryn Race

Global wellness industry hits $5.6 trillion

That's bigger than the GDP of Germany. Healthy eating, nutrition and weight loss alone are worth $1.07 trillion globally, according to a new report by the Global Wellness Institute, which adds that the sector has bounced back surprisingly quickly after the pandemic. [Source: Bloomberg]

Have meal kits and food subscriptions peaked?

A new YouGov survey commissioned by Sherwen Studios suggests 91% of Brits who have not yet signed up to a food or fmcg subscription service say they have no plans to do so. Only 3% said they are likely or very likely to sign up in the next 12 months. [Source: The Grocer]

Promotions soar in UK supermarkets

This October, 27.2% of total grocery spend was on promotions, up from less than a quarter in October 2022. Own-label products continue to grow strongly, but the gap between own label and branded products is now at its narrowest since spring 2022. [Source: Kantar]

Vegan food's 'craft beer moment'

An eye-catching interview with the founders of THIS on the recent troubles in the plant-based market. 'What's happening is extremely un-exotic and happens every time there's an over-proliferation in the category. It happened with craft beer. There was a big explosion, people said we've reached peak craft beer and then it starts to consolidate from say 20 brands to five. It happened with smoothies in the mid-2010s." [Source: Daily Mail]

Boom time for Too Good To Go

The food redistribution app says its number of registered users is up 62% in the past 18 months, with 80 million users across 17 countries. In the UK, 27,000 food businesses are active on the app. The app's founder says food redistribution has acted as a 'safety net' for food businesses after the pandemic and helped them deal with less predictable footfall. [Source: The Times]

Rethinking sugar

A thought-provoking episode of the Rethinking Wellness podcast features Karen Throsby of the University of Leeds, who discusses the gender and class implications of the current war on obesity and added sugar. [Source: Rethinking Wellness]

How Zoe wants to be more than a diet app

Founder Tim Spector has given an interesting interview to Sifted, in which he suggests the company could be looking to move into products such as prebiotics and meal kits in the future. [Source: Sifted]

British farmers swap sheep for solar panels

The Telegraph reports that a growing number of farmers are finding food production makes little financial sense anymore. According to Defra, the average running costs for UK farmers are up by 28.5% and many are struggling to find workers. Just 1% of UK farmland is currently used for solar panels, but there are concerns this will increase if there aren't better incentives to keep producing food. [Source: The Telegraph]

Gen Z grocery stores

A new grocer called Superette World is aimed at Gen Z shoppers, has a Y2K aesthetic and promises to be 'sustainable but cool'. Details are sparse except for a few social media teasers, but we're fascinated by the concept and will be interested to see if/when/how it takes off. [Source: Snaxshot]

The rise of the Sober Girl Society

In a sign that the ‘sober-curious’ trend is here to stay, a UK-based community geared towards young women who want a healthier relationship with alcohol now has more than seven million views on TikTok and 200,000 Instagram followers. [Source: The Times]