New spins on traditional soyfoods hold appeal for contemporary consumers. “The world is moving toward more plant-based and flexitarian eating. It’s not surprising that the global soyfoods market is poised to enjoy a vibrant growth rate of nearly 6 percent per year, reaching over $55 billion by 2025,” says A. Elizabeth Sloan, President of Sloan Trends, an Escondido, California-based firm that tracks consumer food and beverage trends and behaviors, as well as health and nutrition attitudes, eating patterns, and emerging medical markets.  This is Part One of a three-part series on how global trends are increasing the demand for soyfoods.

Food, Health and Environmental Factors Drive Soyfoods Sales Growth

To celebrate National Soyfoods Month in April, the U.S. Soybean Export Council (USSEC) turns to Sloan for an analysis of current trends relating to the demand for U.S.-grown soybeans. Dr. Sloan addresses the global shift to more plant-based eating styles. “While Asia Pacific has long dominated soy-based markets, Europe—especially the U.K., Germany and Spain—as well as North America are expected to make significant contributions to plant/soy-based sales.”

These changes, Sloan says, are fueled by sustainability and dietary evaluations. She notes that in 2018, Western Europe introduced more soy-containing products, closely followed by Asia and North America. “It is noteworthy that such a well-established, health-based ingredient as soy continues to be a leader in some of the world’s largest and fastest-growing food and dietary supplement categories—for example, sports nutrition products, infant formula, meat alternatives, and non-dairy milks, cheeses and yogurts.”

Speaking of the rise of non-dairy milks, soymilk currently accounts for 40 percent of the global soyfoods market, and the increasing use of soymilk is one of the key growth drivers in the soy market.[1]

[1]Hexa Research, 2019. Soy Food Market Size and Forecast by Product (Milk, Oil, Other), By Application and Trend analysis, 2015-2025.