Natural Products Expo East 2018 Opens with Announcement of Trends Driving Growth & Connecting with Consumer Demand

The New Hope Network today kicked off the 33 rd annual Natural Products Expo East, with the announcement of nine trends to watch in natural and organic foods and beverages; beauty and home products; and supplements and ingredients. The event runs today through Saturday, September 15, at the Baltimore Convention Center.

Natural Products Expo East offers a well-timed opportunity for industry watchers to track the trends that will drive innovation in food and consumer products now and heading into the new year, with more than 1,500 exhibiting companies, including 443 brands making their Expo East debut. At the show, New Hope Network's content and research team will be watching the following nine trends, highlighting companies and products that are using their growing might to create positive disruption in the consumer goods marketplace.

Natural Products Expo East 2018 Trends

1. Fat is Friendly
The days of fat-free (and sugar-laden) cookies, bars and drinks are long gone. Increasingly consumers, whether they follow a ketogenic diet or not, are embracing fat in all its forms. Animal fats such as butter and ghee? Bring 'em on-we'll drop these formerly vilified ingredients into coffee for breakfast. Tropical oils such as coconut and palm? Sure, if they're sustainably sourced. This trend drives exploration into new fatty foods, too, such as the pili nut.

Trending product examples: Fat Snax Lemony Lemon Cookies; Know Brainer Ketogenic Creamer with MCT Oil & Organic Grassfed Butter; and Lavva Whole Food Plant Based Yogurt Blueberry.

2. Solving Seafood
From overfishing to lacking transparency, seafood is rife with problems. Smart natural brands find creative solutions to seafood's many issues. Radical traceability allows consumers to know not just where their fish was caught but by whom. Low-on-the-food-chain small fish and mollusks are sustainability superstars. Sometimes, seafood's issues are even answered with convincing, fish-free alternatives made with protein-dense whole legumes.

Trending product examples: Fishpeople Ready, Set Salmon Rainbow Peppercorn; SafeCatch Elite Wild Tuna; and Good Catch Fish-Free Tuna Mediterranean.

3. Freshifying the Freezer
The dark, forgotten frozen food aisles are finally brightening up. Arguably the O.G. convenience category, pioneering brands are ridding excess sodium and bland flavors and embracing fresh, healthy and flavor-forward meals to lure time-strapped adults (especially millennials) to the freezer cases. Companies that prioritize USDA Organic, trendy ingredients (such as ancient grains, mango and cauliflower), special diets and minimal prep will win.

Trending product examples: Wildscape Peri Peri Portobellos; Swapples Everything; and Nolita Cauli-Bites Original.

4. Plant-Based Planet
Plant-based eating is no longer just for dedicated vegans. Consumers are choosing to eat plant-based options if not all of the time, at least some of the time. Just look at almond milk sales, which outpace traditional dairy sales. And even burger joints are flipping delicious meat alternatives. White Castle, for instance, now carries the vegetarian Impossible Burger. To feed demand, brands are crafting exciting plant-based products that win in texture and taste.

Trending product examples: Giorgio Foods Savory Wild Portabella Jerky; Elmhurst 1925 Milked Almonds Barista Edition; and Tofurky Year-Round Ham Roast.

5. Convenient 'Shrooms
Compelling research about mushrooms has spurred interest in the "fungus among us" for everyday immune health. Mushrooms are even expanding into sports and performance products, as well as general constitution-building nutrition, in easy-to-consume formats. 'Shrooms aren't just for supplements-mushrooms such as cordyceps, reishi, lion's mane and more are being incorporated into foods and beverages for seamless inclusion into the day.

Trending product examples: Performance Tea Energy Super Functional Tea; Four Sigmatic Golden Latte Mushroom Mix Beautify with Shiitake & Turmeric; and REBBL Reishi Cold-Brew.

6. New Ways with Hydration
Getting eight glasses per day is vital to healthy living. But hydration doesn't stop at sipping. From vitamin-infused beverages to topically applied face toners that contain hyaluronic acid (a compound that can hold 1,000 times its weight in water), pioneering companies are focusing on hydration across natural products categories. Portable hydration powders-designed to be added to bottled water-can help users drink more water, too.

Trending product examples: Thirty Strawberry Watermelon Natural Rehydration Drink; Herbal Dynamics Beauty Rose Water Calming Face Toner; and HyVida Hydrogen Sparkling Water Raspberry.

7. Waste Resourcefulness
When vast food supplies flood landfills while populations go hungry, it's time for innovative solutions that solve both the food waste and food injustice problems. Brands that tackle waste by sourcing landfill-bound, underutilized ingredients and find homes for byproducts win bonus points.

Trending product examples: Caskai Sparkling Cascara Infusion; Origin Almond Cold-Pressed Almond Juice Lemon Ginger 360 Cleanse; and Brew Dr. Kombucha Love.

8. The Quest for Rest
Energy-giving beverages are no match for a good night's sleep, and consumers are finally understanding that to power up they must first power down. Products infused with efficacious sleep-supporting ingredients-such as valerian root, passionflower and even melatonin-curry favor with restless consumers who know the key to overall well-being is found in restorative sleep.

Trending product examples: Lone Star Botanicals Dream Herbal Tea; SOM Sleep Zero Sugar; and Snoooze Natural Sleep Drink Strong.

9. Trustworthiness, Tested
At a startling frequency, more studies are finding that pesticides such as glyphosate or heavy metals contaminate foods from reputable brands and result in a flurry of lawsuits. Living in an increasingly tainted world makes it all the more important for brands to know exactly what is-and more importantly what is not-in their products through rigorous testing to maintain consumer trust. Verifiable certifications can help communicate such test results to shoppers.

Trending product examples: MegaFood; NOW Let It Be Organically Essential Oils Kit; and Wedderspoon Organic Manuka Honey Drops Fennel and Cinnamon.

To view these trends and products images, visit the online gallery at newhope.com.

All Natural Products Expo East badge holders can catch an overview of what product categories are fueling the most significant growth for the natural products industry and why, and dig into the trends driving growth, at The State of Natural: Disrupting for Good in 2018 and Beyond session, from 8:30am to 10:00am Eastern Time on Thursday, September, 13.

Industry watchers who are unable to attend Natural Products Expo East may view the State of Natural session for free via livestream and join in the #ExpoEastTrends conversation online.

"When walking the halls of Natural Products Expo East, it is undeniable that growth in the natural and organic products industry is shaping the future of how we eat and live," said Carlotta Mast, Senior Vice President of Content and Insights, New Hope Network. "That growth is just one part of the story of what makes this industry so successful. The exhibitors here, large and small, are connecting with consumers through business practices that disrupt for good. We don't just find healthier products but we see brands creating important change in support of issues that matter on a global scale, from social justice to climate change and more. The trust between brands and consumers is evident in the innovative new products we see on these floors that make their way to store shelves and shopping carts."

Follow @NatProdExpo and #ExpoEast on Twitter and Instagram, and visit us on Facebook for ongoing conversations.

About New Hope Network
New Hope Network is at the forefront of the healthy lifestyle products industry. With solutions for the complete supply chain from manufacturers, retailers/distributors, service providers and ingredient suppliers, the network offers a robust portfolio of content, events, data, research and consultative services. Through its mission of growing healthy markets to bring more health to more people, New Hope Network helps businesses identify the people, products, partnerships and trends that create better opportunities and connections. For more information visit www.newhope.com.

About Informa Exhibitions
New Hope Network is part of Informa's Global Exhibitions Division. With over 200 trade and consumer exhibitions annually, Informa Exhibitions is a global market leader in such end markets as Boating, Beauty, Construction & Real Estate, Life Sciences, Maritime, Health & Nutrition, Agriculture and Pop Culture. Through face to face and digital channels, its transaction-oriented exhibitions enable communities to engage, experience and do business. In doing so, Informa brings together people who want to buy and sell, network, do business and gain inspiration. Industry insight, coupled with an innovative and entrepreneurial approach, provides Informa Exhibitions customers and partners with the opportunity to create business advantage and access markets.

View original content:http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/natural-products-expo-east-2018-opens-with-announcement-of-trends-driving-growthconnecting-with-consumer-demand-300710629.html

SOURCE New Hope Network

Natural Products Expo East 2018 Opens with Announcement of Trends Driving Growth & Connecting with Consumer Demand

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