In 2016, Deloitte published a study in collaboration with the Food Marketing Institute and the Grocery Manufacturers Association revealing that the drivers of consumer choice are shifting. Historically, purchasing decisions have been made largely on the basis of traditional drivers, namely taste, price, and convenience. However, a set of evolving drivers has become increasingly influential, encompassing health and wellness, safety, social impact, experience, and transparency. Over half of the 5,000 U.S. consumers Deloitte surveyed said that they now weigh these evolving value drivers more heavily than traditional ones, a trend that spans product categories, region, age, and income and seems set to continue.
Further, research conducted by The Centre for Food Integrity in 2016 revealed the high levels of concern regarding food safety among consumers, with two in three American consumers identifying this as a key area of concern. The research also showed that only 40 percent of consumers feel they have the information they need about where food comes from, how it is produced, and its safety credentials.