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New Study from Levercliff Showcases an Important Consumer Focus on Health

Adults in the United Kingdom are making a conscious decision to make a lifestyle change to positively impact their health

A new study fromLevercliff, categoryconsultants to the food and drink industry, has found that just under athird of adults in the United Kingdom are making a conscious decision to make alifestyle change to positively impact their health, with a further 16 million peoplewilling to consider it. This all comes at a time when legislation andregulations surrounding health in the food and drink sector are under scrutinyand tightening.

The restrictionsdue to be set on advertising and volume promotions for high fat, salt, andsugar (HFSS) foods will now be staggered, with in-store volume deals beingdelayed to January 2023 and advertising pushed to January 2024.  Levercliff’s study – which polled over 1,000people in April 2022 – found that more people are reverting away from perceived‘unhealthy foods’, with 35% cutting down on sweet snacks, an increase of 15%from October 2021. Instead, they are opting to eating more vegetables (40%),combined with other healthy lifestyle factors, such as increasing exercise(45%) and cooking from scratch more (31%).  

Healthpriorities differ depending on age. For example, 18 – 34-year-olds and 55+ year-oldsage groups both focus on not consuming too much sugar, while 35 – 54-year-olds areensuring they eat their ‘five-a-day’. However, it is apparent – across theboard – all shoppers are willing to reduce personal calorie intake.

As consumers becomeincreasingly knowledgeable about how diet can impact overall health, the productsending up on UK dinner plates is changing dramatically. 73% of meat eaters havemade changes to their choices over the last 12 months. 26% of respondents haveswitched to eating more chicken, with 20% reducing the amount of cookedprocessed meat and 18% reducing the amount of red meat they eat. What’s more,an increasing number of consumers are adopting more plant-based lifestyles too– 29.7 million UK adults now have at least a partial vegetarian or plant-baseddiet.

“Our studyclearly shows how consumers are re-evaluating their lifestyles and shining aspotlight on their overall health and wellbeing – with diet playing a largerole in this. While the HFSS legislation has been delayed, it’s clear that consumerswant to make healthier choices - and producers should be listening to whatconsumers are saying, not just the rule-makers.

“By taking adeep dive into the data, producers can gain a real understanding of what theirtarget audience wants. This can be used to review existing product lines, developNPD, and create bespoke marketing and sales activations.” Comments FintanO’Leary, Managing Director of Levercliff.