Mars, Inc. pledged to remove all artificial colors from its chocolate, gum, confection, food and beverage products over the next five years.
Simple, clean and inviting
Like much of the food and beverage industry, clean label has become a key trend in confectionery. Mars, Inc., McClean, Va., pledged to remove all artificial colors from its chocolate, gum, confection, food and beverage products over the next five years.
In its “Chocolate and sugar confectionery in the U.S.” report published this past July, the market research firm Euromonitor International, Chicago, said the focus of health-conscious consumers on ingredients is prompting companies to remove artificial colors, ingredients and bioengineered organisms from products.
“For this reason, chocolate manufacturers continued a trend toward cleaner labels in 2016,” the report said. “Following pledges by Nestle and Hershey in 2015 to remove artificial flavors and ingredients from their confections, Mars announced in February 2016 that it was phasing out all artificial colors from its food portfolio over five years.
In November 2015, Hershey announced that its Hershey’s Kisses and milk chocolate bars were free of artificial flavors.
“In November 2015, Hershey announced that its Hershey’s Kisses and milk chocolate bars were free of artificial flavors for the first time. As this trend evolves, products that are more ‘natural’ or ‘less processed’ continue to gain favor with consumers.”
Yet the shift toward cleaner labels does not necessarily mean U.S. consumer approval will translate into significant sales growth or volume growth. One confectionery category that is trending, according to Technavio, is the market for premium products.
“Confectionery consumption is gradually transforming into the consumption of premium products,” Technavio said. “Consumers look for premium products as they are associated with higher quality, fine flavors, a specific origin and ethically sourced ingredients. Every vendor of confectionery is coming up with premium products because luxury products have been touted as a growth area for confectionery products in the U.S.
“Confectionery manufacturers in the U.S. are experimenting with new ingredients and flavors to meet the changing consumer demand. They are also inventing new confectionery products with reduced sugar and fat levels for health-conscious consumers.”