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Replacement foods and ingredients, especially in the gluten and dairy-free categories and increasingly protein, are on the rise. According to Innova Market Insights, health remains the number one reason to buy food alternatives, with one in two US consumers reporting that this was their reason for buying alternatives to bread, meat or dairy.

Demand for alternative proteins has resulted in rising use of black beans, lentils, peas, rice, nuts and seeds, chickpea and even insects as protein ingredients for foods, Innova says, as well as driving development in new sources such as duckweed/water lentils.

Between 2013 and 2017 Innova Market Insights says it saw 17 per cent CAGR in the dairy alternatives category, and 11 per cent for meat.

“This is not just dairy or meat – it’s a much bigger trend,” Innova Market Insights’ director of innovation Lu Ann Williams says.

Examples now in the market include a cauliflower pizza crust from Green Giant, Tesco’s low alcohol gin and tonic, and locally, San Remo’s Pulse Pasta (pictured).

“This is a big, interesting, exciting world where there are lots of opportunities in many different categories.”

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