Product development in the food industry entails developing new food products – from conceptualization to final marketing. Developing a successful food product is a step-by-step process that requires meticulous research in all aspects. We’ll categorize the entire product development process in three broad steps: screening, consumer testing, and commercialization. All these steps include sub-steps that you also need to pay attention to.
What Is Product Development in the Food Industry?
Screening is the evaluation step in the product development cycle. In the food industry, product development kicks off with a methodical weighing of the many factors such as suitability, purpose, expected gains, and so on.
The early stages of any new food product start with an idea. Product ideas can be something revolutionary that will change the way how people consume. In some cases, it might be an improved iteration of something people already know of. An idea should be tackled from the company’s as well as the consumers. You need to work hard to find any fallacies in the idea.
A refined product idea is a good foundation for all other steps. Consequently, everything else can fail if the idea itself isn’t good.
Traditional market research spans six types of analysis:
Target market analysis
Gauge your target market. Who is going to be the ideal buyer of the new product? What are the pain points of potential customers that affect purchasing habits in this segment? What are the drawbacks of existing products in the segment? And so on.
Thoroughly investigate the geography you’re targeting and ask questions specific to buying habits, buying intent, influences, and buying psychologies. This allows you to identify what will sell and how it will sell in your target region.
Pricing analysis is fairly straightforward. How are you planning to position the new product? How does your pricing fare against the closest competitors? Why will people buy your product at the given price?
Analyze your competitors who are already operating in the target market. What are their strategies? How do they expand? Why do people buy from them? Why should someone choose your product over the competitors?
A SWOT analysis can help you cultivate valuable insights for your product and its potential performance. SWOT is an acronym that stands for Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats.
Business regulations and legality analysis
Lastly, check the regulations and legal circumstances in your target market. Make sure everything is factored in. This can include informing consumers of the nutritional information in a specific way.
Consumer testing is generally done with the help of focus groups. However, other methods of acquiring information and completing consumer surveys also exist.
Consumer testing allows you to test the feasibility of your product. In some cases, it makes sense to complete separate feasibility tests. Feasibility tests focus on acquiring information on the relevancy of the product from people who are likely to be your customers.
Gather feedback and use this data to build insights. During this stage of the process, what you find will ultimately go on to improve the product before it’s released into the market. In fact, you must gather feedback by all means available to you.
Prototype Development and Test Marketing
Use the feedback to do test marketing in an isolated space. Also, develop multiple prototypes to choose from. This is essentially an extension of the basic consumer testing paradigms and can be skipped.
Test marketing allows you to test the promotional capacity of your brand power rather than the product itself. It’s also important if you wish to scale your marketing and advertising in the future.
This is the last step and includes sub-steps such as:
- Launch: Do the launch of the product and market it.
- Feedback: Gather feedback from consumers and monitor channels for growth opportunities.
- Growth: Use the insights you receive to build a better version of your product or to give consumers more value.
- What can Fortress Nutrition LLC do for you?
Product development in the food industry isn’t as easy as it may seem. In fact, even the best companies can fail. Take a look: 13 Failed Food Products That Will Take You Back In Time
What can Fortress Nutrition LLC do for you?
Rest assured that you’re in good hands with Fortress Nutrition. To learn more about how we tailor our blending, ingredient sourcing, logistics, consumer packaging, and other services to meet customer needs, and find out how we can partner with you to ensure compliance with new GMO laws, contact us today.