Welcome to The Week in Consumer Packaged Goods, a weekly round-up for marketers from Quad Insights that covers the latest must-know news surrounding the CPG space.

Report: Consumers continue to prioritize environment, healthy foods despite financial struggles

Even in the face of inflation, a majority of consumers remain committed to making food purchases that are healthier and better for the environment — often seeing the two as one and the same — according to a new international survey conducted by food processing and packaging solutions company Tetra Pak. In Tetra Pak’s 2023 Nutrition Index, three-quarters of respondents noted a strong interest in purchasing products with specific health claims — with 66% saying they’re paying more attention to what they eat and drink — while 70% said they believe healthy products shouldn’t harm the environment. Despite 60% of respondents saying that rising prices will limit their access to healthy food — and half saying they are only “getting by” or worse financially — only 17% indicated a willingness to sacrifice food and drink with health benefits.

It’s worth noting that when it comes to fostering health — that of people and the environment — more than half of consumers (51%) look to brands and manufacturers first. “Consumers believe that healthy, sustainable food is key both to their own health and that of the planet — and they expect the food and beverage industry to deliver it,” the Tetra Pak report notes.

Ocean Spray releases zero-sugar juice options as consumers opt for healthier beverages

As many consumers are trying to move away from sugar — with 44% of respondents from the aforementioned Tetra Pak survey saying they are reducing their sugar intake — Ocean Spray announced this week the release of a sugar-free line of its flagship juice. Rolling out in grocery stores this month, these “Zero Sugar” options, in Cranberry and Mixed Berry, are sweetened with stevia leaf extract. The new formulations follow the company’s release earlier this year of three “better-for-you” juice options, Food Dive’s Chris Casey reports, which include juices with vitamins C and E and one with electrolytes. “Ocean Spray sees the writing on the wall for the beverage segment,” Casey notes, “and is working to evolve its product portfolio to fit shifting consumer desires.”

With the help of Martha Stewart, Pure Leaf discourages DIY home-brewed iced tea in new ads

PepsiCo-owned iced tea brand Pure Leaf launched a new campaign this week featuring Martha Stewart in which the famous DIYer encourages viewers to ditch homemade iced tea for ready-to-drink Pure Leaf, trade publication Beverage Industry reports. The campaign features two 15-second commercials telling viewers to “DDIY” (don’t do it yourself), leaving more time for hobbies. In the spots, less time home-brewing iced tea translates to more time for Stewart to practice her music — specifically, playing Dr. Dre on the harp — and engage in woodworking, which she does with a chainsaw.

“While the campaign is a little humorous, the concept plays into the ideas that Pure Leaf has been touting for a while,” FoodSided’s Cristine Struble notes. “People should have permission to put themselves first. Whether it is enjoying a new hobby or saying no to taking on another task, the reality is that life is about enjoyment.”

Steak-umm’s “DeepSteak” campaign highlights the threat of deepfake technology

Frozen beef brand Steak-umm this week released a new video that highlights the implications of deepfake technology. Called “DeepSteaks,” the video shows a seemingly typical consumer focus group involving a group of vegans, but in reality, it’s a prank.

After viewing clips of themselves making comments praising meat — actually deepfakes created using AI tools — panelists “struggled to make sense of what they were seeing,” Ad Age’s Tim Nudd writes. “The participants’ reactions are a big part of the video’s entertainment value, but they’re more than that — they also drive home the point.”

Further reading

“Consumers want grocers to use AI to help them save money, Dunnhumby finds” (Grocery Dive)

“The Buying Power of Diverse Communities in the US Is Rising” (Adweek)

“Cup Noodles Will Finally Be Microwave Friendly” (Complex)

“Global brewers reap the rewards as drinkers pay more” (Reuters)

“Homegrown Brands announces ‘integration’ of SVB Foods” (Just Foods)

“Publix Introduces Festive Ice Cream Flavors for Holiday Season” (Progressive Grocer)

“Golden Peak Tea Celebrates Golden Hour With Photos Taken Through a Liquid Lens” (Adweek)

“Starter’s new collaboration marks a new stage of growth for the heritage sports brand” (Glossy)

“Crocs Wants to Breathe New Life Into Old Clogs” (Sourcing Journal)

“How Doritos used AI to silence chip crunches while gaming” (Ad Age)

“Raley’s launches sampling box for loyal customers” (Grocery Dive)

“Mars Snacking Builds Out Branding, Delivery Services for Skittles Products” (Consumer Goods Technology)


Thanks for reading. We’ll see you next week.

If you’d like to catch up on prior installments of this column, start by heading to last week’s recap: “The Week in Consumer Packaged Goods: October 27, 2023 edition”