From ‘old people’ veg to trendy must-have: beetroot is making its way into more and more food and drink products, as the earthy veg continues to benefit from its status as a healthy ‘superfood’.
Over the past 12 months, the top five have increased the number of products they stock containing beetroot as a key listed ingredient by 20%, data from Brand View shows, with new beetroot products appearing in juice and soup fixtures, on fresh fish counters and in yoghurt aisles.
New products listed during the period include Innocent’s Skip to the Beet juice, Tropicana banana, strawberry and beetroot juice; The Funky Fish Kitchen salmon fillets with beetroot and horseradish butter; Sainsbury’s own-label Thai beetroot soup; and The Collective blackcurrant and beetroot yoghurt.
At the same time, sales of fresh beetroot have continued to rise - from £42.8m in 2013 to £50.5m this year, and up from just £30.3m a decade ago [Kantar Worldpanel 52 w/e 1 February 2015].
Anthony Gardiner, marketing director at G’s Fresh - a major supplier of beetroot to the mults - said sales had been boosted by beetroot’s well-documented ‘superfood’ status. “There’s been a lot of university work on the benefits of beetroot over the past six years, and we’re expecting more research in the next year, including the positive effects it can have on hypertension and endurance.”
The health benefits had made beetroot a firm favourite with food writers, while new added-value and convenience products (such as infused beetroot) had boosted its use as an ingredient, Gardiner added.
Tesco, for example, has introduced a number of new fresh beetroot products as part of its recent salad range review, including a 140g diced beetroot deli pot (£1) and barbecue beetroot relish (£1.25/200g).