Will hemp seeds sprout into the subsequent massive tremendous meals?
With the passage of the 2018 Farm Invoice, hemp manufacturing was legalized within the US, permitting the use hemp seed as a product and a meals ingredient, Jared Simon, president of meals ingredient firm Hemp Oil Canada, shared in the course of the presentation. And in contrast to the leaves and flowers of the hemp plant, “no actual cannabinoid may be discovered within the [hemp] seed,” Ali Connell, VP of gross sales for Hemp Oil Canada mentioned.
Whereas it does not have the recognition of its tremendous seed friends, “hemp actually is a rock star amongst the tremendous seeds” for its nutrient-dense content material, Connell mentioned. By way of protein, hemp seeds have “double the protein of flax and chia,” Connell mentioned. A 30g serving of hemp seeds incorporates roughly 10g of proteins, whereas flax has round 5g of protein and chia about 4g per the identical serving measurement, she added. Moreover, hemp seeds include 12g of Omegas 3 and 6, together with gamma linoleic acid (GLA).
Hemp seeds lags behind different tremendous seed, however have alternative to increase
Hemp seeds are at the moment lagging behind its tremendous seed rivals each by way of gross sales as a standalone product and in hemp-based merchandise, based on Scott Dicker, market insights director at SPINS.
Shelf-stable hemp seeds accounted for $18m in gross sales for the 52 weeks, ending Jan. 29, 2023, in comparison with flax seeds at $26m, chia seeds at $34m, and $387m sunflower seeds for a similar interval, Dicker mentioned. Nevertheless, hemp seed has “a whole lot of alternative for enlargement” due partly to its diet profile, Dicker added.
However not solely are shoppers mixing hemp seeds into their cereals or sprinkling them into their salads, however many CPG manufacturers have additionally begun to make use of them in a spread of merchandise from lotions and creamers, scorching cereals, juices, sweet, bread and baked items, and frozen entries, Dicker mentioned.
The general hemp seed product market totaled $216m for the 52 weeks ending January 29, 2023. Among the many highest gross sales classes, hemp juices have been price $42.4m, $11.4m for the breaded and baked items class, and $6.5m for warm cereals for a similar interval. On the decrease finish of gross sales have been frozen entrees at $5.3m, sweet at $4.1m, and lotions and creamers at $3.5m. Nevertheless, the class with the bottom gross sales (lotions and creamers) was the best development class, rising 129.6% year-over-year.
“Hemp seed is one thing that basically … grew up within the complement channel, although it’s a meals. However you [usually see] what’s in style in dietary supplements making its method into meals and beverage simply by way of the practical beverage area first.”
Delivering on particular diets
Past its diet content material, it additionally suits into many trending diets, together with vegan, vegetarian, Paleo, Whole30, and FODMAP, Dicker defined. By way of development inside these particular diets, SPINS discovered that hemp merchandise with Whole30 claims grew 5.5% year-over-year, 5.3% for Paleo, 4.7% for FODMAP, 1.6% for vegetarian, and 0.6% for vegan, for the 52 weeks, ending Jan. 29, 2023.
Whereas vegan was the bottom development for the final yr, its development for the final two years was increased than any of the opposite diets at 34.4%, Dicker famous. As compared, Paleo grew by 11.9%, FODMAP by 11.2%, vegetarian by 9.0%, and Whole30 by 8.5% for a similar two-year interval, based on SPINS information for a similar two-year interval.
Hemp seeds have a wellness second with Gen Z, millennials
Hemp seed gives a chance to fulfill the well being and sustainability calls for of Gen Z and Millennial shoppers, Simon mentioned.
“One of many issues that we’re seeing is that the connection that Gen Z has with meals is just a little completely different than previous cohorts. I believe for them well being is not only about bodily well being. It is about holistic well being,” Simon mentioned. “It is about bodily wellness and psychological wellness and looking out in direction of meals to assist … deal with a few of these challenges that they might have of their lives.”
For one, “54% of shoppers are saying that they are altering their weight loss program to assist handle their stress,” based on an IFIC 2021 Meals and Well being survey, Simon mentioned. “Individuals are searching for many various pathways to take care of [stress], and meals is a kind of essential locations,” he added.
Moreover, youthful shoppers are searching for meals and beverage merchandise that additionally come from sustainable sources and do good for the planet, Simon defined. Hemp is usually “used as a rotational crop with most producers,” which gives diet to the soil, Connell mentioned. Moreover, the plant is nice for carbon sequestration, because the “lengthy taproot [of hemp] helps hold … the carbon within the soil,” Simon mentioned.