Canada looks for sugar alternative

HONEY: Younger women drawn to natural sugars.

WITH popular cooking shows on the rise and food posts on social media feeding the desire for showing off delicious baked creations, new research from Mintel reveals that 43 per cent of Canadians who use sugar/sugar substitutes say that whether or not a sugar/sugar substitute is good for baking is an important factor to consider when purchasing.

Women use a larger range of products as over four in five (84 per cent) use two or more types of sugar/alternative sweeteners compared to just 79 per cent of men.

While the research revealed that taste is by far the most important point of consideration when buying sugar or sugar substitutes over half of Canadian consumers (58 per cent) also based their purchase on whether the product was natural or not. Nearly two in five said that they consider perceived health benefits when purchasing sugar and sugar substitutes, while one third typically check food and drink labels for the type of sugar/ sweetener used.

The preference for more natural or less processed alternatives is driving some consumers toward the use of honey, as Mintel research reveals that usage levels of white sugar (54 per cent) and honey (53 per cent) are on par among Canadians. Younger women seem to be especially drawn to natural sugars as female consumers age 18-44 are just as likely to report using honey as they are white sugar.

Negative perceptions are affecting sugar sales, falling 15 per cent from 2011-16, as the alternative sweeteners sector grew 10 per cent during this period.

Mintel is the world’s leading market intelligence agency, with offices throughout the world including London.


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