The health and well-being industry: a growing opportunity for food products and restaurants

As a result of the pandemic, people have become more aware of their health and the methods to take to improve general wellbeing. From personalised healthcare, supplements and a new wave of prioritising healthy eating there is a strong trend emerging which the food and hospitality industry is seizing.

In recent years, there has been an exponential growth in holistic healthcare, and we are seeing this in the rise of healthy restaurant and food products. Through an increase in education surrounding health and healthy eating people are more knowledgeable about what they are putting in their bodies. No longer are people looking for the quickest, less nutritious option and instead we are seeing customers wanting affordable yet healthy options.

It isn’t a new concept that the general population is interested in improving their health. We have seen large mainstream restaurant chains and food brands pushing to “Green wash” their products. From colour palates proven to make people believe a product is healthier, to the use of health-related words we are seeing a growing trend that all companies are wanting to be perceived in a better, healthier light. Health is generally considered to start in daily activities and on our plates, but how do we know, as consumers, what the best option for health is?

The bounds of the healthy food industry are huge and its perhaps this breadth that is leaving consumers feeling somewhat bewildered by what is the healthiest option. From keto to plant bases, vegan to animal product there are so many options on the market, with some much conflicting medical opinions on the health benefits of each diet. With so many options how can consumers make informed decisions as to what is the best option?

Whilst this confliction of opinions could be viewed as a negative, it has opened a new avenue of personalised health: a method which is allowing people to have more understanding of their wellbeing through personalised testing and greater insight into the diets and healthy food which works best for them. It is this personalisation which is creating room within the industry. By creating a population where individuals are looking for a diverse range of products we are seeing the sustainable yet exponential growth of small, specialised businesses. Some restaurants are choosing to focus on vegan food whilst others are looking at the connection between farm and plate.

This increase in people wanting healthier options is a great opportunity for the hospitality industry. We have seen the industry attempt to embrace this concept by providing more meal options and a range of products to appeal to those wanting healthy options. However, due the growing health and obesity crisis perhaps this is a trend that the industry should be further investing in. It is possible that we need to see more hospitality businesses guiding their products to attract health conscious individuals or that more restaurants and establishments need to think if their offerings will be attractive to the modern dinner. Healthy food whilst normally a more expensive option for establishments could in fact be the key to enticing customers and sustainably boosting revenues.

The collaboration between the health industry and hospitality industry is an exciting partnership which suggests plenty of room for innovation and entrepreneurship. Consumers appear to continue to grow in interest surrounding their wellbeing, so will we be seeing more and more businesses, products and establishments leaning into this opportunity?

Written by Lexie Cook, EP Business in Hospitality