ATLANTA — New products catering to lifestyle diets were trending at the International Dairy Deli Bakery Association’s (IDDBA) 2022 show, held June 5-7 in Atlanta. Keto-friendly items delivering less carbs and more protein were on display alongside plant-based desserts, ready-to-cook meals and more.
New from Eli’s Cheesecake Co. is a line of vegan cheesecakes. A chocolate variety features non-GMO tofu topped with Belgian chocolate and dusted with cocoa, while a fruity variety features dairy-free lemon cheesecake topped with raspberry puree and dried raspberry powder.
Meat-free ready-to-cook meals from Culinevo Kitchen and Café Spice were on display alongside a plant-based, keto-friendly egg alternative from Spero Foods. Gourmet Evolution debuted a line of plant-based deli meats in black forest ham, roasted turkey and mortadella varieties.
Nearly 70% of Americans say they follow some type of diet, according to IDDBA’s March 2022 consumer survey. While plant-based attributes are appearing in a growing number of new launches, just 6% of consumers identify as vegetarian and 4% identify as vegan.
“The plant-based movement isn’t just about vegan and vegetarians,” said Jonna Parker, principal of the Fresh Center for Excellence at IRI, during a presentation at IDDBA. “It’s actually very much about the flexitarian lifestyle, cleaning up ingredients and feeling like the meal you have is super-powered.”
This may explain why sales of dairy-free milk alternatives have outpaced plant-based meat analogs, she said.
“The reality is that milk alternatives are both for folks who are avoiding animal product but also those who are lactose intolerant,” Ms. Parker said. “It has a bigger potential group of customers. The plant-based trend has faced backlash because of how many ingredients are used to make some of the products. Doing something that’s real and that people can pronounce is going to be in favor for the future.”
Keto-friendly products may appeal to a wider range of consumers. IDDBA’s consumer survey found 19% of Americans follow keto or low-carb lifestyles.
“I’ve seen protein bread and keto bread on the show floor,” Ms. Parker said. “Those kinds of claims are what people are looking for. Keep in mind that while plant-based is a big trend, the concept of ‘protein is power’ is really what’s important for a large segment of the population.”
New keto-friendly products on display at IDDBA include a bread mix from Primal Bakery, available in burger bun, multigrain loaf and sandwich bread varieties. The company also showcased a Keto Bread made with plant-based protein.
Outer Aisle Gourmet launched a line of low-carb and grain-free sandwich thins made with cauliflower, eggs, Parmesan cheese and nutritional yeast. The bread alternatives come in original, Italian, jalapeño and everything flavors.