By Flavor & The Menu
July 7, 2019
Plant-based protein was the theme of the first annual “Food, Function, Flavor” event held this spring at the Culinary Vegetable Institute in Milan, Ohio. During the three-day event, chef-attendees took a deep dive into plant-based menu development, with presentations on the topic interspersed with farm tours and hands-on culinary workshops.
Maeve Webster of Menu Matters consultancy teamed up with Flavor & The Menu’s Cathy Nash Holley to share data and insights on plant-based proteins, including how and why protein has increased in importance among consumers, the role functional foods are beginning to play, and how plant-based product innovation is evolving to meet demands.
They shared consumer data from a recent Datassential survey to reinforce the importance of strategies around plant-forward and functional foods on menus today:
52% are trying to incorporate more plant-based meals into their diet
60% are interested in ingredients with natural health benefits
86% place some importance on the role of food in addressing health issues
54% are interested in menu items designed to offer complete functional benefits