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How PLM Can Help Manufacturers Capture the Health Food Market

“Healthy eating” has been a part of the zeitgeist for as long as anyone can remember, but its definition has shifted dramatically over the decades. Food trends, social esteem, scientific breakthroughs, median income, and other variables have all played a major role in shaping each era’s idea of quality food. New elements impacting society, like climate change, environmentalism, and social responsibility have created a new range of quality attributes we give to food.

Now, “healthy foods” are no longer just defined as being low in fat or calories. They have other attributes designed to meet increasingly complex consumer needs surrounding dietary restrictions and social responsibility. Food and beverage manufacturers have the heavy burden of not only creating new products that have these attributes, but also accurately labeling them for consumers and maintaining supply chain transparency.

Achieving this can be more complex than it sounds. Fortunately, product data management (PDM) and product lifecycle management (PLM) provide a systematic approach for all of it.

Intrinsic vs Extrinsic Attributes

Intrinsic attributes are the physical aspects of a food product that are innate. This includes sensory attributes such as taste, smell, and visuals. One of the easiest intrinsic attributes of food quality to illustrate is the redness of an apple.

Extrinsic attributes of a food product generally cannot be verified even after purchase and consumption. Also called credence attributes, these cover non-sensory dimensions of quality, like nutrition, dietary requirements, food safety, ethical concerns, geographical origin, health, and the types of production methods. Since credence characteristics are not verifiable, credence attributes require standards or certifications to be communicated to consumers.

Currently, healthiness and sustainability are among the most important and the most preferred credence attributes of food products. Consumers are not only aware of the connection between food and health, but of food and environment, so they are making conscious choices about their food products.

What Are The Credence Attributes of Sustainability?

Vegan

Ethical veganism is no longer just a trend but a mainstream way of life. Livestock farming, especially beef, is responsible for a high proportion of greenhouse gasses, causing climate change. By preferring vegan, vegetarian, and flexitarian (or plant-based) choices, consumers are opting for food items that are healthy for their body and the earth. Thus, the demand for plant-based food products that are rich in protein and fiber is skyrocketing.

Organic

Organic foods are free of genetic modification, synthetic pesticides, and fertilizers. Consumers that demand these products do so because they cause less environmental toxicity to create, and are associated as being more healthy as well.

THE ULTIMATE GUIDE TO PLM FOR MANUFACTURING

Unlock the secrets of PLM and take control of your product development journey. Click now for our comprehensive ‘PLM for Manufacturers’ guide!

THE ULTIMATE GUIDE TO PLM FOR MANUFACTURING

Unlock the secrets of PLM and take control of your product development journey. Click now for our comprehensive ‘PLM for Manufacturers’ guide!
Local
Any food produced locally has less distance to travel from origin to market, dramatically reducing carbon emissions involved. Consumers that opt for these products do so to fight climate change, and support regional farmers. There is also a perception that local foods are more fresh, natural, and nutritious.
Fair Trade

When food products have fair trade ingredients, it means that farmers and suppliers have been ethically compensated for their work rather than ripped off by large corporations. Consumers purchase these products to support independent farmers and contribute to an equitable global economy.

The credence attributes of sustainability are becoming increasingly important for food and beverage manufacturers to achieve product differentiation in the marketplace. They have a significant impact on consumer satisfaction, loyalty, and purchasing intention as well as a direct and indirect effect on the perceived quality of a product, which ultimately influences a consumer’s willingness to pay.

Growing consumer awareness on the role of food in the climate change crisis is leading to more focus on sustainable and healthy attributes in food products. The increasing importance of product attributes in consumer food decisions has led to increased pressure on product development in F&B manufacturing. So, how do F&B manufacturers not only create products that adhere to sustainability attributes but effectively communicate them to consumers?

PDM and PLM to the Rescue

PDM utilizes database software to capture and organize all product and process-related information in a single location. PLM provides the framework and tools for F&B manufacturers to capitalize on data when making decisions about how to develop, test, package, and market products. And perhaps most importantly, these software tools make it easy to label products and convey their sustainability to consumers in compliance with all regulations.

Revalize’s formula-based lifecycle management software helps manufacturers face these challenges with a holistic approach — empowering them to accelerate innovations, leverage new product trends and introductions, streamline costs, and deliver better-quality products with less time and effort.

Schedule a demo to see how Revalize can help you on your journey to create more sustainable food products.

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