The International Dairy Deli Bakery Association’s (IDDBA), Madison, Wis., released its annual trends and resource publication, “What’s in Store 2020,” which illustrates trends and data about buying habits and marketplace influences.

Clean labeling, plant-based alternatives and transparency in how food is raised, produced and delivered are top consumer purchasing trends in today’s retail food landscape.

“Knowing your consumer is the No. 1 priority for food manufacturers and retailers alike,” says Jeremy Johnson, vice president of education. “Shopper tastes and preferences are changing as quickly as they ever have, making it vital for food professionals to have a grasp of what consumers are looking for when they walk into your stores.”

Among their findings are:

Clean labeling

  • Although clean labeled products represent a $25 billion market, most of those sales reside outside of the perimeter.
  • Consumers want clean simple ingredients that they understand.
  • Clean label claims include natural, no additives/preservatives, organic and GMO-free.

Plant-based alternatives

  • The No. 1 reason Americans are eating more plant-based is to prevent or treat illness.
  • 39% of Americans try to incorporate more plant-based foods into their diet, but 59% agree it’s important to have a balance of both animal and plant-based food.
  • Plant-based is resonating with younger consumers, including Millennials and Gen Z.
  • Eight dairy categories have achieved $100 million or more in annual plant-based dollar sales.


  • Dairy manufacturers us a “less is more approach” to deliver transparency to consumers who want to recognize ingredients and know where they come from.
  • Transparency matters in indulgent products.
  • New in-store technology allows consumers to access product information on the transparency of supply chain, animal welfare and carbon footprint.