Chicago (July 15, 2011) – The Institute of Food Technologists (IFT) gathered in New Orleans from July 11-14 to learn about innovative new food and beverage products launched around the world. Mintel, the global leader in market and consumer intelligence, hosted the all-new Mintel New Products and Consumer Insights Pavilion, complete with innovative product tastings and presentations highlighting the latest trends in the food, drink and foodservice industries.

During each session, Mintel’s renowned new product experts, Lynn Dornblaser and David Jago, presented on the topics of Portion Size, Functional Foods and the 2011 Flavor and Ingredient Predictions.

- The nutrition guideline we don’t talk about: portion size
” as companies respond to the new US nutrition guidelines, it appears that the most important issue is largely ignored by CPG companies – portion size,”notes Lynn Dornblaser. “100-calorie packs helped the US consumer think about easy ways to control consumption, but today the packages are less focused on just 100 calories and more focused on providing additional benefits. “

- Functional foods: dead or alive?
Fifty-six percent of US consumers have bought a functional food or beverage in the last three months, but with growth slowed, the market is stagnating.

- Flavor and ingredient predictions: 2011 update
Late in 2010, Mintel unveiled its 2011 predictions for flavors and ingredients in North America. Lynn Dornblaser and David Jago provided updates on the current state of seven of the 12 flavor and ingredient trends.

More than 600 attendees at the Mintel presentations and tastings were asked to vote on their favorite products in each category and their results include:

- Sensible Portions Veggie Snacks Variety Pack from Canada took first place in the portion size category. This product is said to offer on-the-go convenience and contains no artificial flavors, colors or preservatives. Emerald Nut and Granola Mix from the US and Krave Chocolate Hazelnut Cereal from Ireland took second and third place, respectively.

- IFT attendees chose the Special K Protein Shake from the US as their favorite product to help stay fuller for longer. Nestle Plus Antioxidants Cereal from Belgium came in second place, followed by Special K Savory Herb Crackers from the US.

- Stonewall Kitchen Roasted Peach Whiskey Sauce (US) came in first place and aligns with Mintel’s dark spirits flavor and ingredient trend prediction. It was a tight race for second and third place, with a difference of only six votes. International Delight Almond Joy Creamer, demonstrating the coconut flavor trend, nabbed second place while SunButter Sunflower Seed Spread, an example of the seed ingredient trend, came in third. Both products are from the US.

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