Consumers & Hot Cereal

August 11, 2014
Consumer Flavor Ingredients Trends

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FONA International conducted an online consumer survey in February 2014. The overall goal of the survey was to gain insight into consumer understanding and preferences of warm breakfast offerings. 350 respondents completed the survey, with the majority of the respondents between the ages of 35-44.


• Consumers are interested in a hot cereal that provides a full serving of fruit and/or vegetables.

• Strawberries, blueberries, bananas, nuts and brown sugar are the top five consumer preferred add-ins for hot and cold cereal.

• Convenience, energy and taste are overall trends seen in the consumers’ results.

• The top nutritional area the consumers are interested in is satiety, followed by sustained energy and antioxidants.

• Consumers are interested in a hot cereal with add-ins that create a creamy or crunchy texture.

Hot Cereal in North America

North American Launches

(Jan. 2009 - Dec. 2013)

Fruit, spice and berry fruit are the top flavor sub-categories for hot cereal. The top individual flavors were maple, cinnamon and apple. New hot cereal flavors in 2013 and 2014 include: blackberry, coconut and apple pie. Nut flavors were among the top growing flavors, with pecan, almond and walnut growing 50%, 40% and 33% respectively. Flavor combinations of note include: Lean Cuisine Morning Collection Cranberry, Pistachio & Orange Zest Oatmeal and Modern Oats Mango Blackberry All Natural Oatmeal.

Elevate Me Cocoa Coconut with Chia Seeds Instant Oatmeal

This wheat-free, high fiber product is made with Elevate Energy Bar Crumble, which consists of dates, raisins, almonds, apples, and cranberries.

Compliments Peach Almond Multigrain Oatmeal

A multigrain oatmeal flavored with peach and almond.

Lean Cuisine Morning Collection Cranberry, Pistachio & Orange Zest Oatmeal

Made with steel cut oats and milk with cranberries, pistachios and orange zest.

Modern Oats Mango Blackberry All Natural Oatmeal

Made with wholegrains, seeds and nuts.

Hot Cereal Claims in North America

Claims, North American Launches

Jan. 2008 - Dec. 2013

Microwavable is the top hot cereal claim in 2013 with kosher and whole grain tied for second. From 2012-2013, the whole grain claim saw a 112% increase in the hot cereal category. Organic was another claim that saw a 33% increase from 2012-2013. The largest growing claim within the hot cereal claims is GMO-Free with an 800% increase. Claims that are declining from 2012-2013 are: low/no/reduced fat, time/speed, low/no/reduced cholesterol, low/no/reduced fat and low/no/reduced sodium.

Chia Pods Banana & Mango

Chia Pod Oats with Banana & Mango contains chia seeds, whole grains oats with coconut oil, banana and mango.

Johnny’s Perfect Starts Premium Oatmeal

The wholegrain hot cereal is said to be packed with rolled oats, amaranth, dates, cherries, blueberries, flax sunflower seeds, and pecans.

Purely Elizabeth Organic Ancient Grain Hot Cereal

Made with organic oats, quinoa, which is considered a complete protein, millet, buckwheat, amaranth, which is high in B vitamins.

Boring Porridge Boring Oats Berry Tangy Pure Oats

A no-frill cereal with all the healthiest bells and whistles with cranberry, blueberry, currants, goji berry, whole grain rolled oats, quinoa, flax and chia. This product is GMO-free.



Let FONA’s market insight and research experts translate these trends into product category ideas for your brand. They can help you with concept and flavor pipeline development, ideation, consumer studies and white space analysis to pinpoint opportunities in the market.

Our flavor and product development experts are also at your service to help meet the labeling and flavor profile needs for your products to capitalize on this consumer trend. We understand how to mesh the complexities of flavor with your brand development, technical requirements and regulatory needs to deliver a complete taste solution. From concept to manufacturing, we’re here every step of the way. Contact our sales service department at 630.578.8600 to request a flavor sample or visit