Research highlights understanding
New research results, commissioned by Beneo, shows that consumers intrinsically link fibre with digestive health and prefer fibre that has been derived from a natural source. The representative research was carried out amongst 7,000 consumers in the UK, Germany, Spain, Poland and France.
All things natural
When asked to prioritise different statements in order of importance, 70% of respondents from the five countries surveyed replied that ‘natural products are better’; with 65% of UK respondents preferring ‘all things natural’. This preference for natural ingredients was also reflected in terms of ingredients’ names: ‘chicory root extract’ outperformed other fibre names, such as maltodextrin and polydextrose with respondents, in terms of sounding healthier, safer and recognisable.
Limiting and adding to achieve balance
Respondents watched what they ate by limiting certain things in their diet (e.g. fat, sugar and calories) and consuming ‘extras’, such as fibre. Almost two thirds (61%) of those surveyed tried to limit or avoid fat (UK – 57%) and 60% tried to limit or avoid sugar (UK – 56%). More than half of those surveyed (51%) tried to get as much fibre as possible, or a certain amount in their diets. The UK respondents were among the highest consumers of fibre (59%). One of the main drivers to increased fibre intake across all countries was related to the beneficial effects of fibres on digestive health (84%), with 88% of UK respondents eating fibre to improve their bowel movements.
The attraction of fibre enrichment was high for products naturally associated with fibre; with more than two thirds of respondents (67%) in Europe seeing the benefit of fibre enrichment linked to breakfast cereals and bread, whilst 61% liked the idea of fibre enrichment linked to cereal bars. In addition, more than half of those surveyed found the idea of fibre enrichment in both pasta (54%) and yoghurt (53%) products appealing or very appealing.