Citrus In Demand: Squeezing Out New Potential

ADM technical director Zareena Valappil dives into the extensive taste profile of citrus and how it can be applied to the evolving flavor market.
ADM technical director Zareena Valappil dives into the extensive taste profile of citrus and how it can be applied to the evolving flavor market.

Colder months usher in citrus growing season, and consumers continue to thirst for citrus fruits, ingredients, colors and flavors. Orange retains the top spot among global citrus flavors, followed closely by lemon-lime. Simple, classic flavors like tangerine, mandarin and grapefruit also persist in popularity. From beverages to sauces and baked goods to prepared meals, citrus provides a pop of delight to consumers around the world.

Citrus’ Health Halo

Heightened focus on health and immunity over the past year have secured a place for citrus in consumers’ carts and minds. Consumers associate citrus with vitamin C and immune support, which are closely tied to pandemic-related concerns. Research shows that 65% of global consumers are more conscious of immunity due to COVID-19.1 Plus, 87% of U.S. consumers are focusing on their immunity, and 78% of those consumers are interested in vitamin C.

Bright and juicy citrus fruits are also perceived as refreshing, awakening and invigorating. These flavors can spark a mood boost or a burst of energy for people seeking to balance physical, mental and emotional wellness. Globally, 48% of consumers are more conscious of their mental well-being due to COVID-19. Not only can food be a source of comfort during stressful times, but it also provides nourishment to our bodies when we’re feeling drained. Additionally, vibrant, citrusy colors like orange, yellow and green are signs of happiness and holistic wellness.

Close-to-nature fruit ingredients are important in potential positioning of better-for-you foods and beverages with clean labels, plant-based ingredients, sustainable sourcing and for connecting to ethnic or religious traditions. We also see consumers choosing citrus flavors for permissible and purposeful indulgences like alcoholic beverages, confectionery and baked treats.

References

  1. FMCG Gurus, How Has COVID-19 Changed Consumer Behavior, March 2021

For the full article, please check out the Perfumer & Flavorist+ December 2021 issue.

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