Clean Labels 2.0

September 13, 2018

Clean labels have squarely moved from the natural space to the mainstream. Looking forward, products will need to satisfy a greater number of requirements to meet consumers’ and regulators’ demands as expectations for clean labels evolve. Today’s consumer is part skeptic, part sleuth. And the necessity for brands to be transparent has never been higher.

Some highlights from a Mintel 2018 report on evolving clean labels include:

  • Natural products are evolving from all-natural claims to more “clean label” products, with an emphasis on free from claims, minimal processing, and simple ingredient statements without artificial ingredients.


  • US launches with artificial ingredients are in decline.


  • Even with trendy unicorn and colorful themed food that consumers are craving, these magical colors are still expected to be natural. Colors from natural sources, such as spirulina, turmeric, and fruit and vegetable colors from apple, cherry, radish, and sweet potato, are used to create the pink, blue, and purple colors.


  • In the US, 36% of consumers are interested in free of artificial color claims. Approximately 2% of US food and drink products were launched with no artificial color claims. Consumers were significantly more likely to indicate they would purchase US food and drink products with a free from artificial color claim compared to all US food and drink products.


  • Cleaner labels products are seen as healthy
    • 28% of US consumers agree a food is unhealthy if it has artificial ingredients
    • 30% of US food and beverages shoppers would purchase more store brand food/drink products if they contained ingredients that are easily recognizable
    • 32% of US consumers agree foods with a “natural” claim are good for their health
    • 34% of US consumers agree they are buying more organic foods than they did a year ago


  • Consumers want more transparency
    • 68% of US food shoppers agree it is important to be able to see the food inside the packaging (i.e. through a plastic window)
    • 25% of US food shoppers aged 18-34 have scanned codes on packaging (e.g. QR codes) with a mobile device to get information
    • 21% of US consumers who are responsible for grocery shopping agree technology could help inform them about ingredients, including source, GMO and allergens


  • Consumers have become cynical toward the claims of manufacturers, retailers and advertisers and acknowledge a lack of information on product labels.
    • only 14% of US consumers agree regulatory approval means a food is healthy
    • only 23% of US consumers trust the US Dietary Guidelines are food for them
    • only 16% of US consumers trust health claims on food/beverage packages


Interested in our snacks with clean labels? Take a look through TGF products with no artificial ingredients.

Tags: clean labels, no artificial ingredients

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