The incredible, edible egg is popular with formulators, according to new product releases tracked by Mintel’s Global New Products Database. New product introductions including egg ingredients were up 35 percent in 2013 compared to 2012. The American Egg Board notes most product categories posted record numbers compared to figures compiled for each year previous dating back to 2008.
The strongest Mintel category perennially for egg ingredient use is cakes, pastries, and sweet goods, followed by sweet biscuits/cookies, with 158 and 70 new product introductions, respectively, for 2013, representing a 65 percent and 27 percent increase in those categories compared to 2012 figures.
Prepared Meals, the third most popular product category for egg ingredient inclusion, saw 70 new product introductions in 2013 (85 percent increase). A total of 76 new products including eggs were tallied in the fourth category, sandwiches and wraps, (71 percent increase). While GNPD data simply tracks egg usage in new products and doesn’t analyze the cause for the increase, Elisa Maloberti, director of egg product marketing, American Egg Board, offers some possible answers.
“Both of those categories, prepared meals and sandwiches, speak to the popularity of eggs in convenient breakfast and lunch foods, such as handhelds or microwavable bowls. Egg ingredient functionality not only suits convenience trends, they also fulfill the need for a great tasting protein source that will fuel up and satiate consumers,” Maloberti says. Under package claims listed for these new product introductions in GNPD, the second most popular after ‘kosher’ is ‘microwaveable,’ supporting the convenience theory for prepared meals and sandwiches.
Third on the list for popular package claims is ‘no additives or preservatives.’ “We see this package claim growing in importance as marketers respond to the consumer push for clean, naturally occurring ingredients like eggs on product labels,” Maloberti says.
As the top two rather ‘sweet’ categories indicate, while Americans claim to be more diet conscious, consumers still enjoy a touch of dessert.
“And at the heart of these indulgent sweet goods is a single ingredient, the egg. Egg ingredients serves multiple, vital functions from aeration to binding and crumb structure, yet add just one simple line to the label statement,” Maloberti says.
Also of special note, the Wet Soup category witnessed a 200 percent increase in new product introductions for 2013 (66) compared to 2012 (22). Dairy-Based Frozen Products, a steady category for five years, jumped 123 percent for new product introductions including egg ingredients, rising from 34 in 2012 to 76 in 2013.
“Every year the numbers prove the value of egg ingredients’ functionality and nutrition,” says Maloberti, “and 2013 was no exception. Formulators can rely on eggs for almost every product category.”
Top ten categories for 2008-2013 using egg ingredients:
1. Cakes, Pastries & Sweet Goods
2. Sweet Biscuits/Cookies
3. Prepared Meals
5. Dairy-Based Frozen Products
6. Wet Soup
8. Dressings & Vinegar
9. Hors d’oeuvres/Canapes
10. Seasonal Chocolate