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Issue Summary

Mind of the Consumer research revealed nearly two out of five U.S. adults are currently trying to add more protein into their diet. However, U.S. protein product launches, which experienced steady growth from 2005 to 2013, have recently shown some signs of softening. An exploration of consumer perception and preference can help manufacturers stay aligned with the protein category's potential.

Editor's Take

Some consumers fear protein products will cause them to pack on unwanted pounds, while others think they already consume enough protein through their regular diet. Brand holders who can articulate protein's tie to improved health and wellness, position products attractively, or offer a popular angle (such as plant-based protein) will have an advantage at market.

Takeaways for Your Business

  • Almost 20% of consumers use protein powder supplements; one in four use protein-fortified shakes.
  • Repositioning as a source of lean, on-the-go protein has boosted the success of many meat snacks.
  • Supplier focus on muscle-building is misaligned with consumers' top desired benefits.