High-protein fad diets

From the Whole30 to Paleo, high-protein fad diets are all the rage in America. But how long will it last, and what effect does it have on the food industry and its manufacturers? Let’s chew the fat and discuss how CPG brands are jumping on the trend.

According to WebMD, adult women need about 46 grams of protein per day and men require 56 grams per day. For context, one 8-ounce container of yogurt has 11 grams of protein. And a typical 8-ounce piece of meat has over 50 grams. Needless to say, it isn’t difficult for Americans to fit protein into their daily diets.

Kraft attributes a hefty portion of its fourth quarter net revenues $793 million increased 6.4 percent to its Lunchables franchise, which includes the P3 Portable Protein Pack. General Mills has its poster child, Cheerios, riding the wave, encouraging consumers to ingest their protein in the morning instead of the evening.

A recent Atlantic piece examines Coca-Cola’s high-protein milk, Fairlife, stating that the product launch is a well-timed marketing ploy. At nearly twice the price point of a regular gallon of milk, many believe consumers will be reluctant to switch from the wholesome staple to the protein-rich, lactose-free Fairlife.

Food fads will continue to influence how manufacturers and brands market their products, especially if they’re elevated to meet consumers’ perceived needs.

With contributions by Kyle Pusateri.


Brad is an expert in private label and challenger brand food marketing for Barkley, an integrated marketing and advertising agency. He specializes in working with manufacturing-driven food companies that have aspirations to develop a consumer insight-led strategies to help drive innovation and growth.

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